Japan Fashion News for Ladies: The Mystery of the Eyes
Japan Fashion News for Ladies: The Mystery of the Eyes
Tomoko Hara and Michel Lebon
Modern Tokyo Times
The issue of “double-eyelid” in Japan related to fashion and the deeper meaning is very controversial for many individuals. This cuts across cultural boundaries because it raises many important questions. However, for other individuals it is a natural right for the respective person to feel comfortable with their looks. Therefore, if a double-eyelid helps to restore confidence and other positive energies, then why do some people thrown upon this fashion trend in Japan?
It is abundantly clear that many young ladies find a double-eyelid to be attractive, fashionable, and modern. After all, in a world where progress is altering the political, cultural, and technological landscape; then what is wrong with individuals changing their identity? Also, from an individual point of view then what right do others have in condemning this fashion trend?
However, many individuals do question this trend because it appears to be an attack on “Japanese natural beauty.” Not only this, some people state that the double-eyelid is about an inferiority complex and that culturally it is negative. After all, why be ashamed of your natural features?
Rhiannon Thomas wrote an earlier article in Modern Tokyo Times about this issue and commented that“Anyone glancing at a magazine aimed at young women in Japan could be forgiven for thinking that the most important asset a woman can possess is the elusive “double eyelid.” Walk out of any major metro station in central Tokyo and advertisers will press leaflets into your hands, each full of pictures of smiling girls, delighted with surgery and/or cosmetic tools that finally gave them the perfect double eyelid.
A person with a “futae mabuta” or “double eyelid” has a visible crease between their eye and their eyebrow. This is a natural feature of most non-Asian faces, but it is estimated that less than 50% of Japanese people have this crease. However, you would never guess this from watching Japanese television or flicking through magazines, as almost every female star appears to possess these eyes. Because of the ubiquity of this look amongst those women deemed most beautiful and desirable by society, young Japanese girls often feel intense pressure to “fix” their “monolids” in order to become desirable themselves.”
The above comments mainly relate to internal factors related to the Japanese market whereby the latest trends in Tokyo, Osaka, Kobe, Nagoya, Sendai, and other major cities, are following each other. This would imply that peer pressure is more important than cultural negativity. If so, then the double-eyelid is just an extension of the changing nature of fashion.
Currently it is believed that double-eyelids enable the individual to look more beautiful and youthful. In Japanese animation you will often notice huge eyes which are linked to youthfulness and innocence. Not surprisingly, with the advancement of technology and the power of the media then many ladies are following the crowd. This follows on from management companies which are putting pressure on young female idols to focus on this look and naturally individuals are connecting with this mindset.
However, some analysts in Western nations are questioning the real reason behind this infatuation. Therefore, with “racism” being a very “hot topic” some analysts are linking this trend to internalized racism. According to these individuals the typical Western feature is still viewed to be the most beautiful. Yet, this thinking may actually “denote racism” in itself because many women all over the world have cosmetic surgery. Equally important, you have many negative stereotypes in the opposite direction related to Western people being overweight and so forth. Therefore, does the inferiority complex exist in Japan?
Rhiannon Thomas further states that “Although double eyelids are coveted throughout East Asia, the trend of “correcting” different eyes via a surgery called blepharoplasty began in Japan. Since the procedure was invented in the 1970s, it has rapidly gained popularity. Although it is not as popular in Japan as it is in South Korea, where the surgery is almost treated as a rite of passage for high school girls, it is now the most common cosmetic procedure performed in Japan. It is most popular with female high school and college students.”
“Although double eyelids are coveted throughout East Asia, the trend of “correcting” different eyes via a surgery called blepharoplasty began in Japan. Since the procedure was invented in the 1970s, it has rapidly gained popularity. Although it is not as popular in Japan as it is in South Korea, where the surgery is almost treated as a rite of passage for high school girls, it is now the most common cosmetic procedure performed in Japan. It is most popular with female high school and college students.”
Therefore, it would appear that the double-eyelid is just an extension of cultural factors whereby modern technology can enhance the beauty of women providing they deem the double-eyelid to be beautiful. It seems that rather than this being related to Western issues, that it is more of a Japanese factor whereby beauty, youth, and innocence, are all deemed to be fine qualities. Given this, issues related to “cultural inferiority” or desiring to look “Western” are simply out of touch with the fashionable nature of Japan. Also, this type of thinking could be deemed to be “racist” because it isn’t related to the factors behind the double-eyelid fashion status in Japan.