zhang.jpg image by ilvoelv

Ahhh… beauty…Always a topic of conversation in China… and especially in my school office.  I know the same happens in every office at one time or another.  But the conversations I hear in my office are much different.

Since, I have lived here in the Far East I have seen several very beautiful women and many not so pretty but still interesting to look upon.  However, the Chinese definition of beauty is just so strange to me.  First of all, a true Beauty must be thin… now I do not mean size 3 or size 4 … I mean… very, very thin… more of a size 0 or smaller… yeah right…  A more of a childlike size.   The girls here tend to try to sometimes starve themselves just to look emaciated, and skeletal.   I saw a woman walking down the street that I just could not believe she could possibly be alive, she was so skinny.   I think in my mind how could this be beautiful.  Yet, day after day I see girls that are a true size 4 or 5… complain about their weight.   Many refuse to eat, or will not touch anything sweet, or claim to be on a diet .. because they feel or are told by their peers and family that they are too fat.  And trust me.. they do not say it politely… they just come out and tell people that they are fat… have experienced it a few times myself… and I have come back and said and you are ugly .. what about it… (i just can’t stop being American sometimes)

The next requirement would be… that you be white… yeah.. I know white (rolling my eyes)… the whiter the better… (sound likes something you have heard before?)  It seems in China there is a level of whiteness and to be at the highest level you need to always stay out of the sun, keep yourself covered in the summer, use bleaches to lighten your skin and carry an umbrella, Micheal Jackson must have learned from the Chinese.  

 If you are too dark then you are not considered a beauty, whatever.  The more I think about this .. the more I think old southern belles, or slave times when the light-skinned blacks got the jobs in the house… unbelievable.. that people in this century still think this way.   I see women all over the world in other countries laying out in the sun to darken their skin, to have that little sun-kissed glow.  But in China if your skin is sun-kissed.. then you won’t be man-kissed.

And the last requirement I will list… but is definitely not the final one required.  Is Big Eyes… this just cracks me up… BIG EYES…. they want to have big eyes… Now you and I know that what makes Asian people Asian is that they have almond-shaped eyes… and these people want their eyes to be different, bigger… some even get surgeries to make their eyes bigger.  I have seen photo-shopped pictures in magazines and on their websites to make their eyes look so big that they remind me of those Japanese Anime Cartoons.  All they need is blue hair and they would be twins.   Ahhh .. the Chinese folks are some crazy people… their ideal woman will be Skinny, very white with big eyes… hummm….

Makes you want to scream doesn’t it….. Well… I feel that every woman is beautiful, in her own way.   No matter if your fat or thin, white or black, or big eyed or small eyed… the beauty is within…. and maybe the Chinese should learn that…..because it has been proven time and time again… that just because a woman is beautiful on the outside does not mean she is beautiful on the inside.

Where does this image of beauty come from I wonder… Why do men in China prefer women to be a beauty not to be intelligent.  Is it because of their own low self-confidence… they can’t have a woman who is more than just a pretty face?

I don’t claim to understand it.. and I do not condone it.   I am a by Chinese standards big, overweight cow…and I get pointed at, laughed at and stared at as I walk down the street.  But you know what… this big ole’ cow has a wonderful, loving husband.. and is very confident, and proud of herself… and most of happy….and THAT.. is what is important…

until next time….