When actress Renee Zellweger walked the red carpet at the ELLE Women in Hollywood Awards gala recently, you could almost hear the gasp go through the crowd. The signature squinty eyes, bee-stung lips, and chipmunk cheeks that had us at “Hello” in the film Jerry McGuire, was nowhere to be found.

In their place was a face of a manicured socialite or political wife, decidedly beautiful, but not the woman the world thinks of as Renee Zellweger. Some say she did it for vanity, others say it was to stay competitive in Hollywood, while still others suggest that the drastic changes were made to eradicate a key facial feature of her Norwegian Sami heritage and make her look more traditionally European.

What Did Renee Zellweger Have Done to Her Face?

Cosmetic surgeons have been quick to weigh in on Zellweger’s procedures. There is no confirmation regarding the specifics of the actress’ makeover, but it is generally agreed that she had

  • An upper eyelift
  • A forehead lift
  • Injectable fillers to widen the planes of her face
  • Laser or ultrasound to tighten the skin

These are all common and generally highly successful procedures. So why is Zellweger’s face drawing so much criticism?

Plastic surgeon Michelle Copeland, told the New York Times that Zellweger changed too much. “She was known for having these slightly squinty, slightly hooded eyes,” Dr Copeland said. “The problem is they totally eliminated that look, and now…” 

“She is no longer recognizable. She is beautiful, but who is she? Jennifer Grey?” (referring to the “Dirty Dancing” actress whose nose job drastically altered her appearance and, some say, tanked her career.)Dr. Michelle Copeland, plastic surgeon

Comments about Renee Zellweger’s Cosmetic Surgery

The response to this dramatic transformation has been decidedly mixed, ranging from complimentary:

 “Ms. Zellweger’s forehead was as smooth as a packed ski slope, and her eyes as crystal-blue as ever…wide and round as pennies” – Alex Kucynski, New York Times

…to philosophical:

“if Ms. Zellweger, an everyday beauty whose work celebrated the flawed and embraced irregularity, apparently succumbed to such dysmorphia, what are the rest of us supposed to do?” – Debora L. Spar, President Barnard College and author of “Wonder Women: Sex, Power and the Question for Perfection

…to scholarly: 

“She has reached into a history of the Finns not seeing themselves as beautiful and she has made Hollywood yet more plastic and conformist.” –Edward Dutton, Professor of Finnish Culture at Oulu University in Finland

…to indictments of cosmetic enhancement, in general:

“This is none of my business, but I can’t leave it alone. I am saddened by this…Her body, her choice. Yes. But I seem to be pissed at the standard that has put us – creative, engaged, intelligent women — in this conflicted place.” Nancy Colasurdo, Unfettered50.com

The most illuminating comments, however, may be attributed to Zellweger, herself.

Renee Zellweger Is Looking Good for Herself

Zellweger has remained steadfast in her position that she has not had cosmetic surgery.  Describing conversations about her appearance as ‘silly’, she told People Magazine

“My friends say that I look peaceful. I am healthy. For a long time I wasn’t doing such a good job with that. I took on a schedule that is not realistically sustainable and didn’t allow for taking care of myself…Perhaps I look different. Who doesn’t as they get older? Ha. But I am different. I’m happy.’– Renee Zellweger

If Renee’s happy, we’re happy!

Picture Source: Fox News Magazine

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