Thursday, March 4, 2010

China's Beauty Boom

Yesterday I was home sick, and had a chance to watch Oprah. She did a segment on the price of beauty, and women today face so much pressure to have certain look. Lisa Ling also had a segment in yesterday’s show, where she went to China, and investigated on the beauty industry. One thing that really disturb me is that people will spend from $10,000~$40,000 and undergo a surgery, just so they could be taller. The recovery time from this surgery is usually about 1 year. 

Click here to see the segment 
or go to
I was raised in that kind of environment, and the saddest thing is, my mother is the one who criticize me ever since I could remember. My mother didn’t like my eyes, because my eyes are single layered. (Most Caucasians have a fold/layer, which most Asian don’t have) She wished that I had pretty double layer eye lids like her. So, she constantly says to me, “When you grow up, you need to ‘cut double layer eyelids’ (That was direct Chinese translation).” Too bad, I had my father’s eyes. My mother also did not like how wide me feet were, so when I was little, she tight nylons on my feet to prevent it to become too wide. I remember that my feet would go numb, and it hurts like hell.
There is always a pressure to be skinny in the Asian culture, since everyone else is simply flat everywhere.  I am sorry to y’all Chinese women, but I am proud of my boobs, and my curvy body. I am sorry that I don’t have size “A” or “nearly A” boobs to be as skinny as you, nor do I have a flat jiggley butt that looks bad in jeans. To be honest, I am not fat, you just look scrawny. Stop being so insecure about yourself! Stop making other women look/feel bad about themselves by your unnecessary criticisms.

 This is the result of someone telling her she's too fat. 
Her name is Oliviero Toscani, former model in Paris.
 I happen to be an athlete, and I can jump high and run fast. I played 4 years of Volleyball, 4 years of badminton, 1 year of water polo and 1 year of basketball on my high school teams.  I am grateful for my wide feet which helped me to be steady. Come to think of it, I don’t even wear “wide” when I buy shoes, I just wear regular shoes. I think my feet are just fine.   
In Lisa Ling’s segment talked about many Chinese man and women want to be taller. Since there are so many people in China, and jobs are scarce. In some research showed, people who are taller have better chance to get a better job, better mate, being treated better, and more chance to become successful in life. As cruel as it might sound, in my short life experience, tall people does have a better chance in most things.  Look at the president of United States. They are all over 6 feet tall.
On the contrary, I am only 5’2, and average height for Chinese women, short in America. I do have to say that I had no trouble getting dates when I was a teen ~ College. I can wear any pretty high heels without worrying towering over my dates. That never happens, because my dates are usually over 6’ tall. I can still wear any high heels I want now, and still be shorter than my husband. Unless I want to wear 8in high heel to be as tall as he is.
When you are as short as me, you will be great at being a “setter” (in volleyball) and digging the ball up. If you play volleyball, you’ll know what I am talking about.  I can’t tell you how many times I dug up all those hard smashing balls from those tall girls, and made them mad. Because I am short, and I am great at saving balls, my team has won games!  Who says only tall girls are allowed on a volleyball team?
Going back to Lisa Ling’s segment on the eye surgery; for a long time, I hated my eyes, because my mother always criticizes them. Maybe she just pours her hatred toward my father on me, but that’s another story for other times.  I like my eyelids, it’s easy to put on eye make-up, and I can do the thick eye liner or smoky eyes. Basically anything I want. Not many people can pull off all those look. 

(Sorry, this is the best I can find online. You see the difference? the "fold" is more obvious in the AFTER photo)

I do have to say it took be a very long time to like myself. It was hard to like myself when the person who gave birth to me made me sounded like a defective product. There’s always something wrong about me. My eyes are too small, I am too short, I am too big here or there, and my big curvy butt.
Maybe after living in US for over 13 years has change my way of thinking. You have no idea how many people come up to me and tell me that they love the way I do my eye make-up, and how they wish they could pull it off. Or, they would kill to have my thick dark hair. Or, to have my hips that my mom said is too big. I didn’t know it was possible, but someone told me that because they don’t have hips (kind of ironic, I thought everyone has hips) they said that there’s a space between their hip and the pants. So, it creates this empty bubble by their hip.  Interesting isn’t it?
My husband, he’s my best friend, my lover, my partner in crime. He tells me that I am beautiful every day, and especially when I get off the phone with my mother who just mindlessly indicates that I am too fat. I still struggle with the criticism I receive from her, and then one day, I found out that it’s okay not to talk to your mother all the time. It is definitely okay not to talk to people who put you down.
Guess what? I am much happier now. I am 5’2 and 144lbs, on the BMI chart, I am on the heavy side.  I got my curves, my husband loves it, and I love them, too. I don’t usually wear tight clothing, but don’t mind me saying this, my body look like J.Lo or Kim Kardashian when I wear tight mini skirt. I just have a curvy butt  =^.^=.

In the end, I hope every women will find their inner beauty. What makes them beautiful is not from what other people say. YOU! yes, YOU! you define your own beauty. Be happy!


volleyball voices said...

This is an awesome awesome post. Thank you for sharing your insight. (Loved the volleyball part!)

Sassy Sarah said...

This makes me so sad... I just wish that people could behappy with who they are!

Marie Whetten said...

I think it's sad that so many people have to use surgery, injections, and other unnatural means to get a completely different body or face, just because society (or their mother) tells them they don't look right. True beauty comes from the inside anyway, at least I think so.

...and YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL! I love your eyes, your hair, even your shortness. :) You are perfect the way you are because YOU are YOU!


San Ba Po said...

I love Marie!!

GeeGe12 said...

One correction, the picture is taken by Italian Photographer, Oliviero Toscani. That woman is Isabelle Caro.