Unfortunately, most of my resources are other blogs, as I can't bring myself to pay to read dry research papers, and searching in Korean is harder then it sounds. (grrr... who knew celebrity beauty wouldn't translate well...). My only other source is some personal conversations that I won't be gauche enough to reference here. My only comment to my Korean friends will be that I strongly object to plastic surgery on your face, (unless you've been in an accident or something and then it's reconstructive surgery) whether you believe it or not, you're beautiful in your own way. I've rarely seen any truly unfortunate looking girls and you do not rank amongst them. Besides, no one in the rest of the world thinks my nose is attractive, don't do it!
It also looks like this post might develop into a feminist rant at some point, but let's take it slow and hope I don't get to that.
First off, why I'm hot by Korean standards:
1. Small Face
I know you can't read the numbers on my ruler (cause it's a sweet clear blue ruler), but Shannon and I both agree I'm an awesome 19cm. lol!
This is Koh Ara... a famous actress and model known for her small face has a 19cm face (contrary to what the article claims... count the cm's yourself, lol)
Having a Small Face in Korea is a huge prerequisite for beauty. The smaller the better.
When I first got to Korea I got told "Oh you have such a small face!" Over and over again. I kept saying Thank you becuase they didn't seem like they were trying to be insulting, but thinking 'Geez, you don't have to keep pointing it out!' Turns out it was a compliment. A huge one.
I don't know how well you can see this (click on the pic to see it bigger), this is the search results for 작은 얼굴 (small face). Notice that the first result is for plastic surgery. You might be wondering, how do you make your face smaller? Turns out the plastic surgeon shaves your jaw. Similar to Jaw surgery in the US for TMJ, your jaw is then wired shut until it heals, leading to what a lot of Korean girls consider a double benefit. A smaller jaw and a smaller waist as you're forced to go on a liquid diet until your jaw heals.
In the middle of the page is an article about Korean "Small Face" beauty's in Japan, and how having a small face is a prerequisite.
2. Double Eyelids
Like my small face, I can't help them I was born that way. But millions of Asian girls get plastic surgery to "correct" having almond eyes. Like these (notice the ages of the women):
Or they use Double Eyelid tape... which Simon and Martina demonstrate here:
Love love love!! EatYourKimchi!
Seriously though, I really love Asian eyes. The almond shape is so exotic and pretty. Don't surgically alter your eyes, or you might end up like the lady that couldn't close her eyes anymore!
3. "Western" aka Big Nose
I get complimented on my nose a lot too.... something which has never, ever, ever happened before Korea. My nose is something the Bieser side of my family jokes about being our "inheritance" and something I always hoped I wouldn't pass onto my children (but always knew I, regrettably, would).
I've joked about getting a nose job, but never seriously considered it. Why? Well, because it doesn't hinder my personality, my intelligence and it doesn't make people stop and stare or run away in fear. So no, though I don't like my nose, I would never get it surgically altered.
Celebrity Plastic surgery photos.
4. White Skin (or as pale as possible)
I can't believe I haven't taken any pictures of the crazy huge visors that are for sale or that old lady's wear constantly around here.
Like this, only much much bigger.
Not only that, but all the lady's wearing tons of clothes and scarves, bundled up in the heat to keep the sun off has caused a serious Vitamin D deficiency, according to a study done in 2004. This contributes greatly to the rampant osteoporosis. You might think I'm exaggerating about the osteoporosis but I'm not.
In fact, we've got a joke going that the further bent over an old lady is the older she is. The oldest old lady we ever saw was 800years old. She was touching he toes. I swear.
This joke is a little sad in context now.....
Also, skin whiteners are popular. Either in cremes for home use or a treatment at a salon.
A lot of BB Cremes include whitener and a heavy sunblock. What is BB Creme? Almost the most awesome cosmetic invention ever (in my humble opinion). I'll do a full review on it some other time. Let's just say I wish I could send samples to all my friends out there, because once you put it on the skin you can tell it's different from anything else you've ever used. When I move back to the US, I will be ordering BB Creme because I've already decided I can't live without it.
Some things that don't work in my favor as a Korean beauty:
1. Not skinny enough.
From a study done in 2005, a survey among Japanese and Korean college students say that the ideal BMI is 18.4, which would put me at about 120lbs. I'd have to lose about 45lbs. I don't think so...
2. Small Calves
I don't have huge calves, but as Shannon says, my calves are "womanly". lol. Still, I would never get calf reduction surgery that's so popular here in Korea.
That's about it, after all, I'm pretty darn cute!
Just a couple more things. American plastic surgery standards are not better by any means, just different. The fact that I can think about a lot of american plastic surgery's without shuddering just means that I'm immune due to years of exposure.
And look, I didn't go into a crazy feminist rant after all!