The word “beautiful” holds more meaning to it than you would think. It could mean you have a beautiful soul, or a beautiful smile, or you are a drop-dead gorgeous angel that fell from the sky. What you do not realise is, you could be beautiful in one country and not even the slightest bit of attractive in other.
The famous saying “beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder” does seem to reflect the enriched human culture, nature and perceptions of what beautiful is. As an International student studying in an International community, I noticed a very strange thing about perceiving beauty in others. I would personally find some people more attractive than the others because of my own upbringing or my own cultural bubble that has set rules about how a beautiful person should look like.
Everyone has a different perspective and this made me want to look into how different cultures define beauty.
Asian cultures are all about porcelain-white skin, indian culture ideal of beauty is tto have a long, glossy, healthy hair. Also, being fair meant having wealth, luxury, and more importantly a status that commoners did not achieve in their lifetime. In USA, people are going for crazed plastic surgery interventions, in order to look flawless and young (hello, Kardashians). The latest trends in the world of plastic surgery have been mainly – bigger lips, bigger breasts and bigger butts. If you have them all, you have it all.
In the Arab world, it depends a lot on the country we are mentioning. With countries such as Saudi Arabia, whose dress codes do not reveal more than the women’s eyes, women tend to focus on being attractive through their eyes. They say eyes are the mirrors to the soul, but they are also the platform for many makeup products. Arab women tend to spend a lot of money on expensive makeup brands because they believe in keeping their skin flawless over a long period of time. Arab women also are fond of enhancing their eyes with black kohl to make them look more appealing and exotic. There is an obsession with marketing terms like “organic” or “natural” leading to a deep misunderstanding about cosmetics.
Source: “How beauty is defined around the world’ Written by Khyati Rajvanshi, August 11,2015