Of Rack and Ruin

Is Houston the Boob Job Capital of the World?

When Machete star (and Houstonian) Mayra Leal decided to enhance herself, she turned to the Michaelangelo of plastic surgery.

By Peter Holley April 7, 2014 Published in the April 2014 issue of Houstonia Magazine

Machete star Mayra Leal.

“I love my curves, but I just feel like I want a little more, you know, boobage,” says Mayra Leal. “I like my breasts, but I’m not in love with them. I want to be in love.”

Video: Newsfix

Why do hundreds of Hollywood starlets come to Houston for plastic surgery instead of getting their work done in L.A.?

Why do hundreds of Hollywood starlets come to Houston for plastic surgery instead of getting their work done in L.A.? Dr. Franklin Rose explains toNewsfix.

We tell Leal, who starred in Robert Rodriguez’s 2010 action comedy Machete—during which she is clothed for precisely zero seconds of screen time and memorably hides a mobile phone in her reproductive region—that much of the world is likely already in love with her breasts. Nevertheless, says the 27-year-old Houstonian, there are a few holdouts.

“Writers and directors just have this vision and that’s what they’re going to stick with regardless of whether Oscar-potential-chick over here with no boobs comes to the casting call,” she says. 

And so Leal has turned to Dr. Franklin Rose, the Michelangelo of facelifts, tummy tucks, and breast beautification; also the go-to guy for wives of energy executives, moneyed socialites, and anyone looking for a bump in the entertainment biz.

“When it comes to plastic surgeons, the patient has to be very careful about who they choose,” Dr. Rose explains in his cozy office in a swank corner of Uptown Park, where visitors are greeted by a Salvador Dalí lithograph of a nude female form. “I like to think when you do good work you become known.”

The 62-year-old claims that almost a hundred celebrities and Hollywood insiders have traveled across the country seeking his services, including “around 10” contestants from ABC’s The Bachelor (though only three have confirmed it publicly). Rose is known for his ability to make women look “un-done,” he says. Consequently, he is in demand both near and far. Mostly far.

“I happen to feel sometimes when I’m out at various restaurants that Houston is a bit over-augmented,” he says, and informs us that according to his manufacturers, Houston boasts more silicone gel-filled breast augmentations per capita than anywhere else in the world. “Some surgeons in my estimation are overzealous. A nose where too much has been done is telltale, facelifts that are too tight do not look good, and neither does breast augmentation that is too big.”

Avoiding over-augmentation was exactly what concerned Dr. Rose when Leal revealed her breasts during a recent pre-op consultation. (We politely turned our head to the wall.) “Her breasts are pretty, they’re soft, they’ll take an implant very nicely,” Rose reported, saying that his recommendation was for a 325 cc “fifth generation gummy bear implant,” i.e., a medium C-cup for the actor’s small frame. 

But Leal, pointing to a picture of a Sports Illustrated swimsuit model she’d downloaded on her iPhone, leaned larger. The doctor, like a college counselor sternly advising a student not to switch majors, pushed back. 

“Honey, listen,” he said. “I’ve done 5,000 of these or more, so I’m not going to make you too big, but they’ll be just big enough. I don’t want to take you into that full D-cup because then it actually hurts your acting career, to tell you the truth. Then it looks too ‘done.’ People are transfixed on your breasts rather than your talent. You should be able to succeed. Being too big just detracts from the overall look, I think.”

Leal eventually acquiesced, although not before offering the doctor a final question.

“Are they still going to shake like this?” she said. 

“Aaaaabsolutely,” said Dr. Rose. “They’re still gonna shake.”

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