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The products may be targeted to the Koreans, Chinese and other orientals. There is a huge market for looking as white as the Japanese women. Its all the rage now, gone are the attempts to look like whites. They have their own beauty league now.
India also - the Bollywood stars are all very pale, the average woman is much darker, so there are all kinds of lightening creams.In China, women appear to be obsessed with inadequate bust size also - many of the late night infomercials were for various kinds of falsies that would make the chest appear bigger.K
Hey hey, stopped by randomly and I like the intelligent discussion. As to your question, the Japanese are obsessed with skin darkness as a function of social class but not because of any race issue because Japan in this context was/is homogeneous. In the old days of feudal Japan, dark skin meant you were outside doing manual labor in the fields. Light skin meant you were inside writing poetry, drinking tea, and comparing flavors of incense.
the Japanese are obsessed with skin darkness... But only about 1% of the Japanese women may be working in the fields. The 99% are working in the office or the shop, never exposed to the sun. I think their obsession must have a deeper cause. And I dont think they are trying to look Western.
The ideal is historic and has nothing to do with current reality. At one time in the West, paleness was also considered ideal for women for the same reasons. Being tan was associated with farmers and laborers. At some point in the 20th century the Western ideal switched and being tan was associated with playing golf and tennis and being able to afford to fly to sunny climes in the winter. So Western women apply creams to look darker ("self-tanning cream") and Asian woman apply creams to look lighter.K
...as long as they're not bleaching their bungholes...
Actually this brings us to a different preference - its my understanding that Japanese women do not shave "down there".
1) They are very much trying to look Western, across Asia. Most common surgery in Korea is to create a western nose and western looking eyes. Upper class women are often recognizable across asian societies by their more caucasian western features. Why this should be is unclear, but what is interesting is that this beauty preference seems to have existed even before the West began to dominate the world.2) White skin is prized, although interestingly, least of all in Japan. It is a true obsession across the rest of Asia. In Japan there is a subculture of girls who get tans and try to look quite dark - nowhere else in Asia has this. The farmer/indoor worker theory is the one most commonly advanced, but it is not in the least convincing. Japan industrialized the same time as Germany, and other bits of Asia have been industrial for quite some time, so the farmer/indoor life dichotomy has not existed in any of these places for a very long time, often as long as in the West. Yet the West shifted to a non-pale skin preference, and Asia has not. I don't know why, but the farmer idea does not hold water for me.
I think no one can make money out of "you look great just the way you are", so in the West where a lot of white women tend to look pale (especially in winter) there is a whole industry (tanning salons, etc.) dedicated to making them darker, and in Asia, where a lot of women tend toward darker tones naturally, the industry's job is to make them lighter. Japan as the most Westernized country leans toward the Western model. K
Japanese girls do not shave for the obvious reason that they are born with very little or no body hair.
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