Saturday, March 11, 2006

Asian beauty VS beautiful Asians

One of the things I have noticed during my time here in Europe is that the perception of beauty if enormously different depending on where you’re from. Of course there is the shared beauties, such as Angelina Jolie, the girl is a sex symbol where ever you put her.

However, the Asian conception of beauty and what the “non-Asians” consider as beautiful is quite different. I can see this difference when I see the Korean-American actresses on US-telly and compare them with Korean actresses on Korean telly. The biggest names in US telly who are Korean descendants are Sandra Oh, and Margaret Cho. These women have Korean parents who immigrated to Canada and the US and they probably were born and raised in America. Anyways if you see these girls there are some familiarities. Both have smallish eyes with single lidded droppy eyelids and have long oval yet flat faces. They also have small noses and well more importantly very strong tough characteristics with loads of dry humour. Let’s now look at the biggest names in Korean telly. Cause I haven’t watch telly in along time I can’t say who is the biggest name but here are some nominees. Kim Hee Sun, Chon Ji Hyun, Song Hae gyo. These girls all have big eyes with double eye lids, small faces with pointyish chins, small mouths and well pointy noses and their faces are more 3-dimensional, if you know what I'm saying.

The point is… see the differences. The difference is that the actresses that are famous in Korea more or less have the western-Caucasian facial characteristics and the ones famous in America looks more or less like the typical Korean of which you can’t find anymore in Korea. (Everybody has double eye lids with big eyes thanks to our abundant amount of plastics surgeons. Seriously, all my friends from Korea, either have it by birth or “developed them” in their 20s.)
It is such a pity that Asians ourselves do not recognize the beauty of looking Asian – of course here I mean more or less east-Asian. Every girl in Korea gets their eyes done and many are now getting their nose topped up. Faces need to be pointier and well skinny as a stick but that’s another matter. There is a fad in Korea that have started approximately 2~3 years ago with girls trying to take photos of themselves that makes them look like they have eyes that cover half their face, with pale white skin. I thought these made them look like aliens and they looked all the same.. From this you can tell how we hate looking Asian and try to look as western? as possible.
The sad thing is after the more Asian faced models were used in the US and Europe, Korea started using more or less the models with Asian features. It’s like we need others, the western media more or less, to tell us what can be perceived as being pretty and what cannot. We needed them to tell us that looking Asian is ok.
The good thing is I can be considered an “Asian” faced person, or in Korean 된장(dween jjang- which is THE Korean dish and what we call people who look so Korean you cannot deny it) and can get appreciated more so here in Europe. However, I have to admit that even I think someone is crazy when they say I look attractive. I can’t help but tell them “your eyes are completely fucked up” but then again what do I know.


ThomThom said...

You might consider throwing non-media-induced-perception-of-beauty and personality-radiating-beauty into the equation. Cuz this way you're either insulting my taste or your own intelligence!

Asian Sweetheart said...

Same thing happens here in Thailand. The westerners like dark skinned girls with up-country freatures (wide flat faces and noses). But Thais prefer fair skin and pointy faces (long nose and chin). So the models and actresses that get popular either have those features or get them (lots of skilled plastic surgeons in Bangkok).

eugene said...

hi heejung,
thanks for the blog.
can't agree more

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Anonymous said...

who the hell are you to say this kind of stuff to about Korean women in america/Korea?
Just because Sandra Oh and Margaret, who are popular in america television define all the american born Korean women in america. As far as I know, they look nothing like most Korean girls I have met in America and have been friends with. This whole "everyone in Korea gets plastic surgery", aren't you judging them quite more harshly then you should? Its like your implying the fact that mostly every Korean girl with double eyelids should be thought as have gotten double eyelid surgery. How very ignorant of you.

insatiable hee said...

re last anonymous: I think you should read what is written and not get worked up by what you believe to have read.
Concerning Sandra Oh and Margret Cho (and actually now adding on the new supermodel Hyoni: and comparing it with the Korean actresses/girls who are considered beautiful in Korea, I said there is a marked difference. Never did I mention in any part of the blog post that Margret Cho is what all Korean-American girls look like.
Also, saying that a great deal of Korean girls have double eyelids, do not mean all girls have gotten plastic surgery – “all my friends from Korea, either have it by birth ” – implies that not all girls get surgery done.
I am not sure what your problem is, but just to blow off steam and accuse people wrongfully based on no real evidence, makes you look like you are hiding cowardly behind your “anonymous” status to bitch off due to that you just got off of the wrong side of your bed today and want to make everyone else feel as miserable as you do.
If you have any proper comments/criticism to make, in an adult like manner, you are welcome to do so.

Anonymous said...

i can almost see your point, BUT, the problem is you are comparing women in western television ( Sandra Oh, Margaret Cho) who are not renowned for their beauty, to actresses in Korea who are? it is like compare apples to oranges.

i mean Margaret Cho is known to be a comedian ie funny. I have never heard of anyone in the West ever refer her as beautiful, come on!

it is like comparing Rosie O Donnell to Claudia Schiffer.

Which is EXACTLY what you are doing, you are comparing bunch of girls back in Korea who are not only actresses, but their beauty also landed them tons of proper modelling endorsement.

my point is your faulty logic fails