Tag Archives: Korea

DISGRASIAN OF THE WEAK! Vagina Whitening (That’s Right, You Heard Me)

By Guest Contributor Jen Wang, cross-posted from Disgrasian

One year I vacationed in Mexico and spent the entire time in the water, body surfing and boogie boarding. My skin got really dark, which I don’t care about one way or another, though I am afraid of sun damage and skin cancer, in that order. I made one mistake that trip though, and it wasn’t forgetting sunscreen (always, always remember sunscreen). My mistake was going to see my grandmother right after. The first thing she said, once she got over the shock, was “How did you get so dark?!” For the rest of the visit, she introduced me to her friends as “My Granddaughter-Who’s-Normally-Not-This-Dark.”

Light skin is still prized in Asia for a number of reasons that have to do with longstanding notions of race, class, and gender. Good thing then, that there’s a booming market for skin whitening creams, many of them manufactured by Western companies! And good thing the companies who make these creams also make commercials, because quite a few of them–beyond their creepy, disturbing premise–are kinda hilarious.
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Small in America, Large in Korea

By Sunah, cross-posted from Thick Dumpling Skin

I often jokingly say that I decided to live in the States because I fit into an Extra Small size here whereas I couldn’t wear anything but Large in Korea. My American friends find it hilarious. Well, to be honest, it’s not a joke. It’s half of the truth.

Growing up in Korea, I had always been one of the big girls. I was athletic and loved physical activities. I jogged in my neighborhood, where no one else ran unless he or she had to chase somebody. I rode in-line skates when people didn’t even know what they were. I played tennis in college, and practiced martial arts. I was fit, but not slim in Korean standards.
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