Under Western influence, the Asian beauty standard switched from the traditional plump-faced, mono-eyelid woman to the flamboyant double-eyelid female. The double-eyelid woman has become the standard for beauty for long, but the Korean society has opened up to single-eyelid women, with more and more mono-lid celebrities becoming beauty icons. Hf provides an insight into the eyelid war by looking at Korean celebrities.
Korea’s traditional beauty standard used to be a woman with split eyes, low and small nose, and a wide face as seen in Chosun Dynasty’s artist Shin Yoonbook (申潤福) ’s painting “Miindo (美人圖).” These factors all contradict the current beauty standard, but as Korea became influenced by western cultures and values, the standard of beauty changes to a woman with big eyes, high nose, and small face. Even in the 70s, the beauty icon was actress Jeong Yunhui, who can be easily categorized as having the western beauty look.
The easiest way to get closer to the beauty standard was, and currently is, having double eyelids that makes one’s eyes look bigger. This has been practiced for long with double eyelid surgeries as the most popular surgery done in Korea, often noted as just a surgical procedure, not a full surgery, pointing out how often it is done. The most well-known celebrities with beautiful eyes with double eyelids are actress Lee Minjung, Yoona of Girls’ Generation, and Go ara. These celebrities appeared in contact lens commercials with their beautiful eyes.
However, Korea has opened up more to single eyelid women and called certain female celebrities with single eyelids as beauty icons, represented by Gain, Sohee and CL. This social phenomenon made Koreans think that women with single eyelids can cover it up with good makeup and use their signature eyelids as outstanding features of their face. The most common adjectives to describe these women with single eyelids became “attractive,” “sexy,” and “cute.” More and more beauty bloggers began tutorials on women with single eyelids. Korean women with single eyelids are not under the pressure of altering their look with double eyelids. They think of it as their strong point and many men find single eyelid women attractive too.