Beauty may be only skin deep, but to the denizens of Beverly Hills and Bel Air, it means the world. Fifteen-year-old Alison Shaw may not be beautiful, but she doesn't really care: she'd much rather read a good book than primp in front of a mirror anyway. But Alison's mother, Risa, knows that beauty can be a key to success, and she wishes only the best for her daughter. Be careful what you wish for.
When Risa marries a widowed plastic surgeon and moves Alison from Santa Monica to Bel Air, everything changes; everywhere mother and daughter look, their new world is filled with beautiful people, many of whom have benefited from the skills of Alison's new stepfather, the charismatic Conrad Dunn, who is certain he can turn Alison into a vision of beauty. Risa is delighted by Conrad's assurances – and drawn to his cool confidence and deep-set eyes. Reluctantly, Alison agrees to undergo the first procedure, and her transformation begins. But soon Alison discovers a picture of Conrad's first wife, who killed herself after being disfigured in a car accident. To Alison's horror, she notices a resemblance between the image in the photo and the work her stepfather is doing on her. Though Risa refuses to acknowledge the strange similarity, Alison becomes increasingly frightened. Digging further into her stepfather's murky past, Alison uncovers dark secrets – and even darker motives – involving a string of grim murders that began even before she was born. And when at last she catches sight of what she will soon be seeing in her own mirror, she knows her worst fears are fast becoming her reality.