“I grew up in an industry that values the outside considerably more than the inside, and I was caught in that wheel of trying to stay young,” she told People in an interview published on May 4, 2022, six days ahead of the release of her new book, Back to the Prairie: A Home Remade, A Life Discovered.
“I finally woke up and went, ‘What am I doing? I look like a carrot top, and I’m not happy,'” she told the publication about cosmetic procedures to fight aging.
Melissa has been in the public eye since rocketing to fame as a child star at the age of nine on the beloved TV hit Little House on the Prairie. The family drama, in which she starred as Laura Ingalls Wilder, ran from 1974 to 1983, and viewers literally watched the actress grow up before their eyes.
After Melissa married fellow actor, Thirtysomething alum Timothy Busfield, in 2013, she decided to rethink her beauty standards. “I cut off all my hair and quit doing Botox and all that stuff,” she told the publication, adding that she had her husband’s full support.
The Sweet Justice star admitted to getting breast implants in 2015, when she revealed to fans that she was having them removed. In a blog post, Melissa shared, “Next week I’m having surgery to remove my implants permanently. The bottom line … or top line … is that: A. I am concerned for my health and 2. I don’t like the way they look or feel.”
Melissa added, “Frankly, I’d like to be able to take a Zumba class without the fear that I’ll end up with two black eyes.” In the same post, the actress wrote about Hollywood’s unreasonable standards and confessed, “I’d had my nose fixed.” Melissa previously discussed getting rhinoplasty surgery shortly after her 18th birthday in her 2009 memoir, Prairie Tale.
The beloved TV icon recalled her experience competing on season 14 of Dancing With the Stars in 2012. Without naming the show directly, she wrote, “I had spent most of my life pressured to look a certain way and I believed the hype. The height of this obsession with my outward appearance culminated with my appearance on the dancing show. It was all about spray tan and glitter and glamour and what other people think and being skinny, way too skinny!! Yuck!!”
Melissa then confessed how accepting she’d become of being more natural. “Three years later, here I am … still changing …. still growing. I am in a place where I am truly happy with myself. Sometimes I feel bad about my falling face and disappearing neck. But most of the time, I’m really happy with the way I look. I’m enjoying aging. It’s not going badly either,” she shared.
Scroll down for photos of Melissa’s plastic surgery.
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