This extreme beauty product preys on Asian women’s insecurities, and it doesn’t even work
Plus, it looks painful
by Katie Way
It's no secret that white women are the ideal when it comes to the beauty standard propagated by American pop culture. And this standard has bled, both purposefully and unconsciously, into the conception of beauty worldwide.
As an American woman of Southeast Asian and white heritage, these standards have long been on my periphery, but because I'm mixed the pressure on me to conform to this look is significantly decreased. But many Asian women grow up completely immersed in these standards, both in the United States and beyond.
From fashion to beauty to television to movies, the features of white women, fair skin, light eyes, straight and shiny hair, are set as the pinnacle to which all women should aspire.
Nah what the fuck how the fuck and why the fuck pic.twitter.com/eYd6wMffRp
— Z 🕊 (@zararxshid) September 15, 2017
This is evident in the colorism, or discrimination based on skin tone within a racial group, displayed in cultures around the world. But it is particularly prevalent in East Asian cultures, as reflected in the beauty and plastic surgery industries in countries like Korea, China and Japan, where features like pale skin and double eyelids are in high demand.
Korean cosmetics, known as K beauty products, are also especially trendy in America right now. But if you don't read the (translated) label carefully before purchasing that adorably packaged panda face cream, you might unintentionally wind up with a product that's tagged as 'skin whitening,' a phrase synonymous with luminosity as well as a lighter skin tone.
— mamanda (@AHuynhArts) October 18, 2017
But K beauty products are also effective for a variety of skin dilemmas and, if you know where to look on Amazon, surprisingly cheap. What hasn't quite caught on in America are the devices designed to elongate and sharpen the nose. One product that has apparently gained a massive following in China advertises a "nose job-like effect in 30 seconds" after insertion.
That product, the Nose Lifter, consists of a pair of pegs that are inserted into the nasal canal to physically stretch and reshape the wearer's nostrils.
These nose shaping products are peddled to women of Asian descent in pursuit of their Eurocentric beauty standard, one that is derivative of many of the features that white women possess. But much like products designed to bump you up a cup size, they don't actually work. The Amazon profile for the Nose Lifter is riddled with bad reviews.
y’all don’t realize yt ppl are the reason that fair skin, double eyelids, defined nose bridges r the ideal asian beauty standard?
— sam ☆ (@svmsvntos) October 24, 2017
Customer complaints range from a poor fit to general ineffectiveness.
And apparently, products like the Nose Lifter can also be dangerous. Users have reported bacterial infections, and doctors have cautioned that repeated usage could lead to nasal passage ulcers from irritation.
I'm not going to say that Asian women should abandon the pursuit of their conception of beauty and just ~be themselves~, because that's corny and not my job.
But I do think that, in our pursuit of what we find beautiful, we should be cautious about purchasing products that promise to give us the unattainable, and instead wind up being little more than a pain in the nose.