Ideas of beauty from around the world
In Australia, many of us aspire to specific beauty ideals. For example, the majority of us consider a golden tan, toned physique and hair-free bod to be pretty, well, pretty. But ideas about beauty vary tremendously around the world. Beauty really is in the eye of the beholder…
#1 Snaggle teeth
Photo credit: audiyudhistira Instagram
Everybody wants straight, white teeth, right? Wrong! In parts of Asia, some women wear a mould that makes it look like they have a snaggletooth. In Bali, many also undergoe a tooth-filing ceremony when they come of age. The process includes the filing down of the canine teeth (the pointy ones) until they're level with the other teeth around them.
#2 Outlandish make-up
bh’s Astrid’s already shown us some pretty eye-popping make-up from Japan, but the Gyaru beauty culture is next level. A girly-glam style, it breaks all the rules of what many consider pretty with a smorgasbord of bold wigs, fake lashes and faux nails. As you can see, the look also extends to fashion!
#3 Skin Whitening
Here in Oz, it’s the norm to aspire to a golden tan, but paler skin is the preference in some cultures. There’s a reason for this: historically, in countries such as Thailand and India, lighter skin signalled affluence. And yep, skin lightening is still big business!
#4 Long necks
Westerners tend to focus more on their faces than their necks, but for women of the Kayan tribe (many of whom live in Thailand), having a long neck is a sign of beauty. To get the effect, they wear brass coils around their necks. More are added over the years, pushing down their shoulders to make their throats look even longer.
#5 Nose job notoriety
Photo credit: kabirnews.com
In most parts of the world, getting a nose job is top-secret business. Not so in Iran, the rhinoplasty capital of the world, where both men and women are proud to show off the procedure. In fact, many wear the bandages for a lot longer than needed, just so people know they’ve had the surgery!
#6 Blue lips
At bh, we’re all for a bold lip look, but blue is a hue we rarely embrace. Thankfully, Maori women in New Zealand are picking up the slack: for these ladies, a blue lip tattoo is a special beauty symbol.
#7 Visible scarring
Many of our members are keen to reduce the appearance of scars and stretch marks, but the aesthetically-minded Karo tribe in southern Ethiopia actually view them as beautiful. Scarification is embraced to symbolise courage – and also works as an appeal to the opposite sex!
What do you think of these different beauty ideals? What do you consider beautiful?