From Dumbo to Cinderella

As they say, “Kids can be so cruel”.

I met Maee a while back when she and her boyfriend Russ Foxx (who I’ve known practically since he was knee-high to a grasshopper) came by to host some suspensions at my studio, and I can assure you that she is very beautiful and doesn’t need to change anything. But what I think or what Russ thinks or what you think doesn’t erase the damage that was done to her psyche as a child — something I’m sure all of us can relate to in our own way, unfortunately. Ever since a young age she was teased about having big ears, and being called “Dumbo” throughout childhood made a deeply negative impact on her confidence as an adult. She remembers ears being hit by a ruler, being called nasty names, and even being dragged down a hallway by them in highschool.

Maee approached many cosmetic surgeons trying to find someone who would help her, but all they could offer her was “otoplasty”, a procedure in which the ears are folded back toward the head, making them stick out less. This wasn’t what she wanted though — Maee literally wanted smaller ears, perhaps by cutting part of the cartilage out and restructuring the ear in some way. She wasn’t bothered by how much they stuck out — it was their physical size that upset her. But no plastic surgeon was willing to tackle the job.

Even highly experienced cosmetic surgeons are very averse to creating new procedures, unlike practitioners in the body modification industry, who enjoy and excel at the evolution and outright creation of procedures to match the dreams of their clients, so it was serendipity that Maee and Russ fell in love. When Russ understood what Maee went through with her ears, he offered to modify the ear pointing procedure to meet her needs. The results couldn’t have gone better — her new ears look completely natural, but smaller. I was so happy when I read how she felt afterwards,

“He changed my life in a way I never thought could happen. I cried so hard after I got to see my new ears. I felt a sense of relief, I gained more confidence, and I felt as though all those hard years of my life had all faded away in just one single moment.”


In the photos above the inside pair are the “before” photos, and the outside pair are the “after” photos. Since it may not be obvious — and I think the fact that it’s not “obvious” is proof of just how well this was executed — I’ve made a little animation where you can see just how well this turned out. I’m pretty sure I’ve kept things quite accurately to scale. On the right you can see the size of the triangle of flesh that was removed.


7 thoughts on “From Dumbo to Cinderella

  1. WOW. Incredible work! At first I only looked at the pictures and was wondering what the difference was. I thought the arrows were pointing to her tragus. Very well executed.

  2. This is amazing. Total props to Russ. Hopefully he continues doing it. I’ve been consulted for an otoplasty and told that my conch punches would be an issue and I might have to take them out. This give me hope!

  3. The work Russ put into this is more touching than what most doctors would have done anyhow. Instead of seeing this woman as a client with money to spend and a problem to fix, he has seen her as a person who needs to heal and her problem as a challenge instead of a risk. He has given her the chance to finaly be whole as a person, and his attention to detail and care shows in his work.

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