Nucleus and cytoplasm are both essential for white blood cell recognition but the edges of cytoplasm are too blurry to be detected because of instable staining and overexposure. This paper aims at proposing a cytoplasm enhancement operator (CEO) to achieve accurate convergence of the active contour model. The CEO contains two parts. First, a nonlinear over-exposure enhancer map is yielded to correct over-exposure, which suppresses background noise while preserving details and improving contrast. Second, the over-exposed regions of cytoplasm in particular is further enhanced by a tri- modal histogram specification based on the scale-space filtering. The experimental results show that the proposed CEO and its corresponding GVF snake is superior to other unsupervised segmentation approaches.