Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Beauty Ideals

 This post may come of as a bit shallow in comparison to my regular posts. But at least you have been warned.

As you might know already, I am not only a female adult adoptee but also transracial adoptee of Asian heritage or to be more precise a KAD, Korean adoptee. Therefore the colour of my eyes are not blue or green like my mum and dad's instead they are the darkest brown. Like a lot of Asians my natural hair colour wasn't lighter brown but blackish brown, and I didn't have naturally curly hair either (like I almost fooled my natural sisters to believe. ) No I had boring straight blackish brown hair.

By november of last year I was extremely tired of my own hair colour so I decided that I wanted to colour my hair some other colour. Since my hair is naturally blackishbrown or a natural 2.0 I choose between red or blonde. I already knew I wanted the most drastic change I could achieve. (My hairdresser says I'm brave that way. ) I confess that I already was curious about possibly becoming blonde, even though I realized it might not become the exact blonde I wanted. But appearently a lot of Asians are trying to get blonde lately. So I eventually settled for blonde.

I was adopted by a middleaged Caucasian couple in Sweden almost 30 years ago, at the age of two months. I have been forced to deal with rasism because of my different ethnicity. Not only from Caucasians in Europe but also from ethnic Koreans. During my two vacations in Korea I got exposed to the Asian beauty standard or ideal if you like. Because Korea has a long history of pheasantry -women here strive for the most light skin tone they can become by using skin products with high UVA-filter as well as bleach.

My own skin colour is in the range of olive, but not the light milky olive it's a hint of red and brown. I guess this really made me want to avoid getting a tan and instead try to stay as light as I could. I generally get comments about my darker skin tone which many people in the Western world are prepared to spend a lot of money on, while I can achieve that healthy tan by simply spending an afternoon outside on a sunny day. This might sound as I'm bragging but I'm not, when it comes to beauty products and more particularly makeup other women tend to give me a product that highlights my olive colour whereas I want a product that lightens.

Dad was the first person who got to see me in my new blonde hair, and his very first comment was that he didn't like it-me being Asian he insisted I should have kept my natural haircolour. His reaction was a bit shocking to me because both my parents doesn't seem to recognize or acknowledge my different ethnic heritage in general.

According to hair colour technology it isn't advised to colour or brighten your hair more than two shades lighter or darker. Me being blonde has nothing to do with wanting to become a Swede. It's only hair and hair colour to me. But society's reaction is somehow interesting to me.

Why is it more commonly accepted for Caucasians to colour their hair any shade or colour they like while as an Asian woman it isn't accepted for me to even colour my hair ? Or if I must- the only colours that are accepted for me is lighter brown or red ?