The article seeks to understand the relationship between self-esteem and personality traits in feminine vanity and how these associations may influence propensity to undergo into cosmetic surgery. The subject has been studied using the 3M model (Mowen, 2000). The research is based on a survey of 697 students in a Brazilian Federal university, aged between 18 and 50 years old. Vanity was operationalized by two traits: vanity concern (an exaggerated concern about physical appearance), and vanity view (an excessively positive evaluation of one’s own appearance). The main finding indicate that a greater creativity, extroversion, kindness and need of body resources, is related to greater self-esteem, and also that the greater their self-esteem, the less vanity concern and the greater the vanity view. Women who are materialistic and have a greater need to body resources are more excessively concerned with their appearance. The need of body resources is also positively related to vanity view. The influence of self-esteem in the propensity to plastic surgery was noticed by means of vanity concern.