THE SKIN GAME by Colette Dowling


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A Galvanopuncture of the both truly dangerous and unregulated now known as Aesthetics -- there are no state or federal controls to speak of; electrolysists can pump electricity into you without a license -- business. This is both more comminatory and more hopefully corrective than Kathrin Perrutz's Beyond the Looking Glass (1970) or Patrick McGrady's The Youth Doctors (1968) which dealt with certain aspects of this more permissively. Miss Dowling in the first section itemizes the various processes, practitioners (particularly one Christine Valmy) and machinery which should make the hair you want removed stand on end, or add a number of new wrinkles you won't permit any face peel to eliminate. The second section is a name-naming indictment of cosmetic surgeons and their endorsements of their lucrative procedures, particularly mammaplasty, all of short term benefit. However since doyenne Valmy contraindicates shaving and waxing at any time, and all of these other techniques seem still worse, it might have strengthened the book and informed the reader to have had Miss Dowling isolate whatever courses one should pursue for certain disfiguring conditions. She just leaves you to wince, heedlessly.

Pub Date: April 28th, 1971
Publisher: Lippincott