Monday, October 29, 2007

Curly eyelashes and white skin

Here in Palembang, it is a common sight to see women slouched down in hair salon chairs with their eyes closed and a thick white eye-liner at the edge of their eyelids. It turns out that they are getting their eye lashes permed. I guess they want something a little more permanent than what an eye-lash curler will give.

I've also been told that many women who work as farmers in the villages often come here to the city to get their skin bleached. I think its done in just a few days somehow. Its funny that in the West, people are getting skin cancer from tanning and over here, people are bleaching themselves to get white. And just like tanning, the bleach doesn't last. Within a few days of being back in the fields, they're back to their old selves again.

On the surface, these two procedures may seem extreme but as I gave it more thought, its no more drastic that cosmetic surgery in other countries. I watched a documentary about women in China having their shins broken so that they could re-grow slightly longer legs with the help of a brace. And what about breast implants, liposuction and botox? They are in the media so much that I'm starting to think people visit the cosmetic surgeons more often then their dentists. Liposuction seems especially scary to me after watching clips of a doctor moving that suctioning instrument back and forth like a vacuum cleaner.

You can probably tell that I'm not one for cosmetic surgery or even the less invasive procedures like eye-lash perming. Its natural for every woman to want to be attractive but I truly believe that a person's attractiveness can be boosted just by having more confidence. I've also heard two separate men list 'plump' and 'hairy arms' as being attractive to them. So there you never know what men find attractive anyway!

1 comment:

Bilbo said...

Once again, you and I are thinking along the same lines. It's normal to want to look one's best, but it's unfortunate that our perception of what's "best-looking" is governed by the perceptions and prejudices of others. I myself am fortunate that Agnes is still attracted to me now that I'm graying, balding (in the back), and thickening around the middle. Actually, "plump" seems to be a commonly-considered attribute for an attractive female in much of the (non-Western) world, apparently because it indicates that the woman is healthy and well-fed and can bear children. The hairy arms thing is a bit less common, but (as I've found) not all that's just that most men aren't as willing as I am to openly say that it's attractive. Just go ahead and file this whole discussion under, "to each his/her own."