Three Chinese women were left stranded at South Korean airport after immigration officials said their passport photos did not match their faces. women had just had cosmetic surgery to change their looks. surgery had transformed their faces to such extent that passport control officials in South Korea could not confirm their identity. Photos of women went viral on Internet. Their faces were swollen from surgery and were heavily bandaged. Shanghaiist.com website reported that women were not allowed to take their return flight back to China, and were instead held for questioning by the airport authorities. It is still unclear if women have been able to return to China.
South Korea has become cosmetic surgery capital of world. Cosmetic surgery tourism from China is now booming business. More than 500,000 Chinese residents year flock to clinics in South Korea to reshape their faces and bodies. Many of them go to clinics that specialize in making clients look more "Western". Cosmetic surgery is also hugely popular with South Koreans. Around half of women under 30 in capital Seoul are estimated to have had surgery. Many parents encourage their children to undergo surgery in efforts to gain "competitive edge" in job market. There are even hugely popular prime time TV shows that feature before and after transformations.