by Liz W
Beauty lies in the eye of the beholder is a phrase everyone is familiar with, but we rarely think about what it means. Some people might think that everyone perceives beauty the same way, as we are constantly bombarded with airbrushed images of bleached blonde, impossibly long and lean supermodels, which are considered to be the pinnacle of beauty to western civilization. Fortunately, for the rest of the world that isn’t computer generated, there are a lot of varying, and sometimes odd (to the average American) traits that are considered beautiful to those who seek them. Jessica Simpson has recently developed a new reality show called The Price of Beauty, that follows her on a journey around the world, as she searches for, and learns about foreign cultures’ unique beauty tips and secrets. So far her travels have taken her to Japan, Brazil, and Morocco where she immersed herself in the lifestyle and got one step closer to world beauty enlightenment. While not all of us have the luxury to “continent hop” around the globe, it is fun to learn about different trends happening right now, and the origin of some that we have adopted as our own.
|Japan is well known for its extreme beauty rituals, but nowadays, Japanese beauty doesn’t stop with the classic porcelain-skinned, red-lipped geisha. Although the geisha is, and will always remain to be the traditional beauty icon, the younger generations are steering away from the subservient, conservative ways of the traditional Japanese woman and are developing their own ideas of what is beautiful.Trends like 3D Nail art, and bleached hair might be the result of a lot of western influence through the media and pop culture, but Japan is still heavily influenced by eastern philosophy. This eastern way of life is the basis for spa treatments like the fish pedicure, in which you dangle your feet in a pool of water densely inhabited by swarms of toothless “doctor fish” that nibble away all the dead skin cells. This might sound like something out of a science fiction movie, but it is becoming more and more popular, as the little fish leave your heels much smoother than a traditional pedicure can.|
|Getting smooth is also important in Brazil, but it’s not just their feet they are concerned with. With nude beaches being an everyday norm, these Latin women take pride in being the true pioneers of the “below the equator” (no pun intended) Brazilian Wax. Although some women probably curse the day that waxing was invented, it is still a hugely popular, and very effective way to remove unwanted hair from “down there,” and we have these bronzed goddesses to thank for this method.Traveling back up to the Northern Hemisphere, Scandinavian women have been sharing their secret to their flawless complexions, and many are shocked to discover that their most sought after skin care product is mineral water. In addition to drinking it, some of these Nordic beauties splash the ice cold spring water on their faces 15-20 times a day to naturally refresh and rejuvenate their skin. Luckily, for those of us who don’t have daily access to thermal water springs, it is available in a handy spray bottle, like Avene Thermal Spring Water, so we can be a part of this beauty trend too.|
After learning about some of the beauty routines that other women go through on a daily basis, you might want to think twice before complaining about having to endure your grueling two-hour hair appointment (complete with glossy magazines and complimentary glasses of pinot grigio).