I had an interesting experience on my way home yesterday. Winnie and I were walking from my office to a restaurant when someone thrust a flyer in my face. I glanced at it quickly and thought it was something about cosmetics so I took it thinking that Winnie might want to look at it later. When we did open it up we noticed it wasn’t about cosmetics at all but instead it was about plastic surgery. More specifically, it was about breast enlargement.
Even though in my opinion, Chinese girls don’t really look that good with huge breasts, society doesn’t seem to think so. Everywhere you go in the last couple of years be it taxi cabs, washrooms or bus stations you can see ads for plastic surgery — mostly breast enlargement.
That’s why it was so refreshing when I read Danwei’s review of the August issue of Chinese Esquire “Mr. Trends” It comes with a swimsuit supplement to celebrate summer. The difference with other swimsuit supplements is none of the girls are models. They are just average girls off the street and you can even contact them via email — every girl has her email address listed next to her picture (I didn’t try to contact them). And they are average girls, I’m sure you could see them on the street in Beijing, Shanghai or Guangzhou. I don’t expect this to bring about a change in how Chinese women are viewed in the media but it’s a nice alternative. I just hope that most Chinese girls can see the beauty in this. I showed the supplement to Winnie when we got to the restaurant last night and even though she said the girls weren’t particularly pretty, she did seem skeptical that these girls could be considered average. Only after we looked at some of the girls in the US edition of Esquire did she agree with me.