UK Politics

Ex-Tory MP Louise Mensch admits facelift

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Media captionLouise Mensch, who had previously declined to comment on the issue, admits she had facelift

Former Conservative MP Louise Mensch has admitted having a facelift whilst she was an MP.

She told the BBC Newsnight she had had "a little tightening in my face".

She said she had previously refused to admit the cosmetic procedure because of the trivialisation of women politicians based on their appearance.

The admission came during a discussion on a review of cosmetic surgery, which called for stricter controls on who those who carry out procedures.

The review, carried out for the Department of Health in England, warned that a lack of regulation had led to a "crisis waiting to happen" and attacked companies for putting profits before patients.

'Minister for mascara'

Mrs Mensch left the Commons in August last year to move to New York with her three children to be with her husband, Peter Mensch, who is manager of rock band Metallica.

The Conservatives lost the subsequent by-election in her Corby seat to Labour.

In a newspaper interview in 2011, Mrs Mensch refused to say whether she had had a facelift, telling the Guardian: "As soon as I do that you become the minister for mascara."

But following the publication of the cosmetic surgery review on Wednesday and because she was no longer an MP, she said she felt it was the right moment to talk about it.

She told BBC Newsnight: "I had a little tightening in my face and I remember being asked about it by the Guardian - asked if I'd had a facelift because she saw a scar under my chin.

"I refused to answer that question, not because I was embarrassed about the procedure but because people are always trying to trivialise women politicians based on their appearance.

"But as I'm no longer a politician and the government has come out backing this very sensible report it seems a good time to talk about it."

She said she had the facelift for "maintenance" and carefully researched the procedure before having it.

"I picked a very qualified surgeon," she said. "I was fully aware of the risks and rewards, and it amused me that when the papers ran stories afterwards saying 'has she had a facelift?' they ran pictures of me pre-procedure, so obviously you couldn't tell the difference."

Pressed by Newsnight presenter Jeremy Paxman on why she had done it, she said: "I like the way I look, I prefer to keep it that way. I had a very, very good surgeon. The difference is subtle if you get somebody who knows what they are doing. I'm relatively happy, I'm very happy with the results."

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