Is plastic surgery behind Renee Zellweger's drastic new look? Doctors give their views

Rene Zellweger in a cinema still from Down With Love. -- PHOTO: 20th CENTURY FOX
Rene Zellweger in a cinema still from Down With Love. -- PHOTO: 20th CENTURY FOX
Rene Zellweger in a cinema still from Chicago. -- PHOTO: SHAW
Rene Zellweger in a cinema still from Chicago. -- PHOTO: SHAW
Rene Zellweger in a cinema still from Chicago. -- PHOTO: SHAW
Rene Zellweger in a cinema still from Chicago. -- PHOTO: SHAW
Rene Zellweger in a cinema still from Bridget Jones: The Edge Of Reason. -- PHOTO: UIP
Rene Zellweger in a cinema still from Bridget Jones: The Edge Of Reason. -- PHOTO: UIP
Cinema Still : Case 39, starring Renee Zellweger (right) and Jodelle Ferland. -- PHOTO: UIP
Cinema Still : Case 39, starring Renee Zellweger (right) and Jodelle Ferland. -- PHOTO: UIP
Cinema still: My One And Only, starring Renee Zellweger (right). -- PHOTO: RUNAWAY HOME PRODUCTIONS LLC
Cinema still: My One And Only, starring Renee Zellweger (right). -- PHOTO: RUNAWAY HOME PRODUCTIONS LLC
Actress Renee Zellweger arrives at Elle's 21st Annual Women In Hollywood at the Four Seasons Hotel Los Angeles on October 20, 2014 in Beverly Hills, California. -- PHOTO: AFP
Actress Renee Zellweger arrives at Elle's 21st Annual Women In Hollywood at the Four Seasons Hotel Los Angeles on October 20, 2014 in Beverly Hills, California. -- PHOTO: AFP
Actress Renee Zellweger arrives at Elle's 21st Annual Women In Hollywood at the Four Seasons Hotel Los Angeles on October 20, 2014 in Beverly Hills, California. -- PHOTO: AFP
Actress Renee Zellweger arrives at Elle's 21st Annual Women In Hollywood at the Four Seasons Hotel Los Angeles on October 20, 2014 in Beverly Hills, California. -- PHOTO: AFP
Actress Renee Zellweger at the 21st annual Elle Women in Hollywood Awards in Los Angeles, California October 20, 2014. -- PHOTO: REUTERS
Actress Renee Zellweger at the 21st annual Elle Women in Hollywood Awards in Los Angeles, California October 20, 2014. -- PHOTO: REUTERS
Actress Renee Zellweger doesn't look the same anymore. She turned up at the ELLE Women In Hollywood Awards in Los Angeles on Monday (left) with tighter skin and a pair of eyes that looks very different from her old look (right). -- PHOTO: REUTERS,&nb
Actress Renee Zellweger doesn't look the same anymore. She turned up at the ELLE Women In Hollywood Awards in Los Angeles on Monday (left) with tighter skin and a pair of eyes that looks very different from her old look (right). -- PHOTO: REUTERS, UNIVERSAL PICTURES

Actress Renee Zellweger's recent appearance at the Elle Women In Hollywood Awards set tongues wagging, with many asking if she had had plastic surgery because of her drastically different looks.

Did the Oscar winner really go under the knife? We speak with three doctors to get their opinion. 


Dr Woffles Wu, Woffles Wu Aesthetic Surgery & Laser Centre

"I don't think she's had very much plastic surgery done, if any at all.

"It looks more like she lost a lot of weight and maybe she's on one of those Hollywood-fad diets.

"Her skin is thinner and the fatty padding has been reduced. It doesn't look like a facelift. There are more lines on her face but she's still pretty. It's just a more mature, older look. 

"Her neck is scrawnier, as is her whole body, so it's probably a lifestyle change. Normally, the face of someone who undergoes plastic surgery changes but the body doesn't. 

"At the most, she's maybe had some trimming of skin and fat from the upper eyelids. 

"Having said that, I don't know if this is the best look for her. She looks 10 to 15 years older than she should. 

"She used to be a plumpish good-looking person before, but now she just looks very, very thin. 

"Any normal person can have this dramatic physical change with weight loss. A loss of 2kg can make you look five years older and 5kg can drastically alter your appearance. A good example would be actor Matthew McConaughey.

"For someone who is about 35 years old and 65kg to 70kg, a 2kg weight loss will mean more lines on the face and a sagging jawline.

"It's a paradox but as you lose weight, you become physically fitter and healthier, but you end up looking facially older as your face gets leaner.

Dr Woffles Wu is a prominent plastic surgeon with his own practice in Camden Medical Centre. 


Dr Elias Tam, EHA Clinic

"The change is so dramatic I'm not sure if she can pass through customs if her passport has an old photo.

"There's no aesthetic work that I can spot, no skin-lifting that I can see. 

"Usually surgery makes people look younger, but her skin looks aged, eyes are sunken and she looks tired. 

"She must have lost a lot of weight or she could be suffering from a serious illness. I've seen some cancer patients have such dramatic change in appearance.

"A 5kg to 10kg weight loss can lead to such a big change in looks. And you can see that her arms, neck and body are much skinnier. 

"Her skin texture is loose and wrinkled and there's no sign of scars or distortion normally associated with surgery. 

"She looks easily above 50, much older than she is. If it's surgery, it must have been terrible surgery.

Dr Elias Tam is a general practitioner with a special interest in aesthetic medicine. 


Dr Tan Ying Chien, The Sloane Clinic

"She's definitely got eyelid surgery done, with skin and fat removed from the upper eyelid. Her eyes look bigger now. 

"There's also some form of facelift, like a forehead lift as the foreheard looks shinier and tighter. The top of the forehead is rounder too. This could be the result of fat injection.

"Perhaps there was a cheek lift and maybe fat injection as her cheeks look fuller, but I can't really tell from these photos alone. 

"However, she's lost weight so I can't really say if the other differences are due to weight changes or surgery. 

"But there's no way that all these changes could have come from weight loss alone. 

"She looks stiff, unnatural, and when she smiles, her eyes don't smile. She looks frozen too, and that could be the combination of the lift and botox.

"She's lost her signature look, that bit of chubbiness and the sleepy eyes. Her eyes are now uncovered. 

"Personally, I feel she looks OK for a 45-year-old. But I prefer the old Renee Zellweger. In fact, I was just watching Bridget Jones' Diary 2 on HBO yesterday!

Dr Tan Ying Chien is a plastic surgeon with The Sloane Clinic, a chain of aesthetic and plastic surgery clinics. 


Dr Harold Ma, Freia Medical

"I think she has definitely had cosmetic surgery to her eyelids, perhaps to also remove some of the excess eyelid skin and fat. Her eyes appear to be much bigger than what we have come to be so familiar with.

"Whether she looks better or not, is a different debate altogether. In my opinion, I prefer her previous look, which was much more distinctive and characteristic. She also appears older, more gaunt. This may be because she has lost quite a lot of weight, intentionally or otherwise.

"In addition, her skin appears to be of a much poorer quality. It is now dull, thinner and more aged than before. You can see the fine and deep lines that have appeared almost overnight. The youthful, filled look has been replaced with a more mature, shrivelled look.

"Sudden weight loss, either through over-zealous diet and exercise, or illness, can cause a drastic change in appearance. Her skin may also have undergone photo damage due to sun burn or neglect of her skin.

"However, there is very little to explain how her eyelids would change so much, so suddenly, apart from the fact that she may have had surgery. A non-invasive treatment is unlikely to bring about such drastic changes.

"She needs to take better care of her skin, which appears neglected. If she can bring on that youthful, radiant glow, she will instantly look years younger and healthier. Her fine and deeper lines need to be addressed. 

"Judicious weight gain, in a healthy manner, may help to reverse that gaunt look. For more instant results,dermal fillers can restore or re-inflate her facial features. Skinbooster filler injections also help to hydrate her skin quickly. A touch of Botox in the right areas can help to soften some of the age lines around her eyes and forehead.

"Some form of non-invasive skin tightening treatment may also help to give her tired look a much needed lift.

Dr Harold Ma is the medical director at Freia Medical. He is a general practitioner with special interests in lasers, aesthetics and aesthetic surgery.


Other celebrity news sites such as The Hollywood Life and PerezHiltion.com have also interviewed experts on the subject, with opinions varying on whether Zellweger has had plastic surgery, and if so, which procedures. 

Meanwhile, some have come to the defence of the actress, with the Washington Post calling out the hypocritical obsession over one woman's possible plastic surgery when "Americans had more than 11 million cosmetic procedures in 2013".