From tall and slim to petite and curvy, women across the globe come in all shapes and sizes. So it’s no wonder that every country has its own beauty standards that usually stand apart from the others. And, among them, some nations have such an uncommon way of seeing beauty that it just leaves us speechless.
We at Enlighten put together11 countries around the world that have unusual concepts of female beauty.
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A typical Irish woman usually has thick eyebrows, fair skin, and thin lips. But their most common features are a large forehead, green eyes, lots of freckles, and red hair. As the Irish people always stand for natural beauty, they highly appreciate all these traits in women.
In most Western countries, a perfect smile is usually associated with beauty, but for Japan things work in the opposite way. In this country, young women are heading to dental clinics to make their teeth look crooked and multilayered. This semi-vampire look, or yaeba, is actually considered cute there, as the Japanese believe that it’s a symbol of natural beauty and youth.
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Statistics show that Iran has the highest percentage of nose surgeries in the world. And this is not really surprising — since women can’t use their other body parts to attract men, they tend to spend a lot of time working on their faces, especially their noses.
Rhinoplasty is also very expensive in this country, so if a woman went through it, this means that she can actually afford it, being from a wealthy family. Because of that, many Iranian women wear their bandages long after their actual surgery, just to show that they’re wealthy enough. And some of them even wear fake bandages to pretend that they’ve had a nose job.
8. South Korea
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The idea of a perfect woman in South Korea is defined by flawless white skin, a pointed nose, a small face, and large eyes. But the most important thing is the shape of the face — it should resemble a heart, with a narrow chin and should get wider at the top. To achieve this ideal, lots of Korean women spend hundreds of dollars on plastic surgeries.
French women are always for natural beauty in all of its aspects — they wear almost no makeup, rarely use perfume, and tend to keep their hairy body parts unshaven. They believe that true beauty is reflected in the skin of a woman, so, instead of makeup, they try to use more creams and lotions to make their face look perfect.
In Tajikistan, bushy eyebrows, that are merged above the bridge of the nose, have long been considered the standard of beauty in women. Some time ago, there was even a common superstition — the closer your eyebrows are to each other, the closer your husband will be to you. Besides that, it’s considered a symbol of purity and innocence in women.
Although today, things are changing, you still can find a lot of Tajik women with a unibrow. And even those who’ve missed out on the unibrow gene try to fake it and use herbs to grow the necessary hairs or draw the brows on themselves to look prettier.
5. Saudi Arabia
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The eyes are the mirror of a person’s soul — Saudi Arabian women give another meaning to this old saying. As they can’t show most of their face, because of their religion, they usually pay close attention to the beauty of their eyes. To make them more attractive, they use all kinds of makeup and tools and spend huge amounts of money on them.
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For Chinese women, pale skin is considered a true beauty standard. This trend actually goes back to the past when the color of the skin was related to the social class a person belonged to. If the skin was dark, it meant that the person worked in the fields and was poor. Chinese girls don’t want to look poor, even today, so they’re ready to do anything to keep their skin as white as snow.
This addiction to a pale face goes far beyond just avoiding sunlight. To get rid of “black skin,” women in China also use all kinds of face creams that usually contain whitening agents.
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For Kayan people living in Myanmar, the long neck is considered a symbol of well-being and beauty. That is why local girls wear brass coils around their neck from the age of 5. First, they put 6 rings around their neck and then the number of them increases by one each year. By the time of their marriage, the number of rings reaches its maximum as they stop adding them after their wedding.
As a result of wearing those coils, the woman’s neck can reach up to 40 cm. And sometimes the entire construction is so huge and uncomfortable that it’s difficult for a girl to even turn her head. However, they never complain — beauty requires sacrifice, doesn’t it?
2. New Zealand
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In New Zealand, tattoos are not only used to decorate skin, but the indigenous people, the Maori, use a tattoo technique called ta moko to makea kind of ID card in black and dark blue patterns right on the face of a person. Maori women traditionally tattoo themselves on the chin during adolescence and try to make their tattoos as neat and detailed as possible in order to show their social status.
When another person of the tribe looks at this tattoo, they can easily “read” the entire story of its bearer and estimate how beautiful a woman is.
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In this country, when a woman reaches child-bearing age, people remove her 2 lower front teeth and make a piercing in her lower lip. Then they insert a heavy clay or wooden disk in this hole. As she grows up, larger and larger disks are put there to further stretch the lip until it reaches a full-size plate. This lip plate is viewed by native Surma people as a symbol of female maturity that attracts men for marriage.
Local people also use weights to stretch their earlobes until they are long enough to touch their shoulders. They think — the more stretched their earlobe is, the more beautiful they are.
What does the ideal woman look like in your country? Please, tell us in the comments!