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When does Asian Fashion become Fetishizing?


26 posts in this topic

Posted

I know this has been touched upon in the Koreaboo/Weeaboo thread but I feel like it could be a good discussion on a thread of it's own.

Asian fashion is well liked and known here. When does wearing their makeup and fashion become to a point where they're fetishizing or it becomes wanting to be asian. Is dressing in jfashion(etc) and admiring asians unhealthy or too much?

I'd like to understand since I'm a little confused by the boundaries of this too. When is it excessive?

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Posted

I think as long as you are not calling yourself Asian (when you are not) it is fine to dress in clothes or wear makeup from Japan/Korea. I mean people in Korea and Japan also wear clothes and buy make up from western stores and I do not see an issue with it. 

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Posted

It's completely fine.

It's just fashion, it can be universal but not always accepting in differing societies especially with Asian male fashion being done in the West. If people enjoy following J and K-fashion and are greatly influenced through it, what's the problem? I would be pleased if I had a Western friend that was interested in Asian fashion, it would give us lots to talk about and would give me differing perspectives because of my Western friend's differences in facial structure, build, and hair. People in Asia follow Western trends as well. The only problem arises if the person wants to be a different ethnicity.

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Posted

I don't see how liking a fashion trend would be considered having an asian fetish per se. Fashion is fashion and it's influenced by many cultures and constantly changes. I'm not sure how people develope these fetishes tbh.

Here's a personal example from mychildhood:

I was at a con with an (now ex) friend and it turns out they were (and possibly still is) a HUGE weeb. I never noticed how bad it was until the con. So we're having fun buying random merchandise from the vendors and they buy some kind of decorative bottle from an asian vendor. The ex friend then says they are buying that BECAUSE the vendor is ASIAN. How can anyone say that to someone's face and not be embarrassed/ashamed!?! I could only stare at the whole scene. So in other words the ex friend didn't care about the item it was all for the "mystical" asian guy. :alpacadone:

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Posted

I agree with the consensus so far. Every culture has people that wear fashion from other countries. Some people wear Russian fashion, some people wear general European fashion, some people wear Indian fashion, some wear American fashion. Right now wearing Japanese and Korean styles are popular for Westerners. I see no harm in liking the fashion for it's aesthetic, comfort, etc. It only crosses a line when girls wear Liz Lisa BECAUSE it's Japanese and Japanese people are awesome and you can feel like a real life living doll in it just like Hatsune Miku or Chii. 

Makeup, hair, and specific fashion styles are trickier. Lolita is generally accepted to be worn by Westerners. The makeup isn't skewed to make the wearers try to emulate a Japanese person so it generally gets a pass from most people. The only problem that community has is outsiders thinking they are all "living dolls". 

Back in the day gyaru was a lot more controversial but I think the style has toned down so much that most people don't recognize it as gyaru and instead see it as "kawaii fashion". Hell, there are not a lot of people dressing in specific gyaru styles anymore. I specifically come from being involved in the gyaru community and remember when your hair HAD to be styled a certain way, makeup had to be done according to certain styles, you needed circle lenses and false eyelashes were a must or you weren't "gyaru". We were contouring our noses a decade before it was popular in the USA. The problem was unless you had enough similarities to a Japanese facial structure you really had to play around with makeup tutorials and make them your own. There was always a small clique who specifically did their makeup to try to look Japanese, but they really missed the point of gyaru makeup...

Similar was the group that got really into Visual-Kei. It was cool if you liked their mix of punk and glam fashion but I thought it crossed a line when Westerners tried to do their hair and makeup to look like a Japanese idol. It was popular for people to pretend they were were half or quarter Japanese back then too. It's no different than people slapping on poorly done aegyo sal and calling themselves Korean. 

This is just my perspective as a white westerner though. 

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Posted

It's completely fine.

It's just fashion, it can be universal but not always accepting in differing societies especially with Asian male fashion being done in the West. If people enjoy following J and K-fashion and are greatly influenced through it, what's the problem? I would be pleased if I had a Western friend that was interested in Asian fashion, it would give us lots to talk about and would give me differing perspectives because of my Western friend's differences in facial structure, build, and hair. People in Asia follow Western trends as well. The only problem arises if the person wants to be a different ethnicity.

 

aaah!! If you want to talk fashion you can always pm me. I'm from the west!! I tend to like a lot of Asian fashion actually. Granted I know I probably couldn't pull off certain styles or clothes I still like them. Especially the cute styles for girls! I really like the mori/forest girl style haha! Probably the only style I could pull off :alpacacrush:

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Posted (edited)

Are the japanese fetishizing european culture when they wear/invented lolita?(lolita is based on childrens outfits from the victorian and roccoco era) Nope!

A whole lot of japanese people shop at H&M and forever 21 if I google now korean fashion it pretty much looks like H&M all over the place?

Maybe someone can educate me what "asian fashion" even is, since i may not be aware of anything specific, asian fashion isnt popular here at all we still consider paris and rome the city of the ultimate fashion goddesses :D

Or do you specifically mean subcultures? Id say its just as acceptable for a black or white or any gal to wear visual kei fashion as it is for non white people to wear goth fashion. I see no difference.

My japanese friend was a total francophile over the top and already in her 20s, shed tell me she was jealous of my french heritage I think thats when it becomes a bit of a crossing a line situation. If its just a fashion your crazy about I dont see how that is fetishizing. Lots of styles some may consider "asian" like liz lisa style is not really specifically asian anyway since the western variants of these have existed for ages too they are simply called "romantic fashion" or "romantic country" its just not really popular in the west since we prefer 'sexier' styles and liz lisa can be very child like at times. as long as you dont go around hurting people by fetishizing over their genetic dna I see no harm. people love when you think their country and culture is super awesome lol. I know these issues are very sensitive in the usa im just speaking from my non american view

Edited by Kiko
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Posted (edited)

I'm only a quarter Japanese so, I don't look Asian at all but I was visiting my cousins in Japan and I was trying on asian fashion because I love it dearly! I was kind of worried about how they would feel when I was trying on some of the stuff, if I just looked like a weaboo but they were so excited to just show me everything japan! Whenever I attempted to say anything in Japanese or use chopsticks they thought it was amazing I knew even like one word or how to use the chopsticks. So I think Japanese people don't mind people wearing/using their culture? I think the people saying japanese people hate it are non-Japanese people thinking it's racist/cultural appropriation to wear jfashion?

Edited by Cherrypopper
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Posted

I'm only a quarter Japanese so, I don't look Asian at all but I was visiting my cousins in Japan and I was trying on asian fashion because I love it dearly! I was kind of worried about how they would feel when I was trying on some of the stuff, if I just looked like a weaboo but they were so excited to just show me everything japan! Whenever I attempted to say anything in Japanese or use chopsticks they thought it was amazing I knew even like one word or how to use the chopsticks. So I think Japanese people don't mind people wearing/using their culture? I think the people saying japanese people hate it are non-Japanese people thinking it's racist/cultural appropriation to wear jfashion?

 

I've specifically had the same interaction with language. Although I am fluent in it now and I can speak properly with a good vocabulary regardless of the situation, I remember fumbling through Japanese when I was younger. Sometimes I would use the wrong verb, the right word but the wrong verb form, the wrong particle, or I didn't know a noun so I had to guess which English word MIGHT be used in Japan. Even though I couldn't get through a conversation without making at least  one mistake, Japanese people always admired that I was trying. (Although I have found they will rarely correct spoken mistakes...so it extends the trial and error proccess.) 

I think that is a good cue that unless you are running around saying you are "half this or half that" or accessorizing the language (kawaii, nya, and desire in an otherwise normal sentence in English/your native language) other cultures are excited to see people taking an interest in their culture - including fashion. 

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Posted (edited)

I can't speak for all asian people, but as a Korean, the only time I'm bothered by someone wearing "k-fashion" is when they wear traditional korean clothes like the hanbok outside of its traditional purpose. Or if they try to wear a hanbok as a fashion piece and not respect its origin and history.

I'm fine if they wear a hanbok to a traditional korean party or wedding or New Years eve festival if someone invites them to.
Otherwise, going out and buying a hanbok or god forbid even making your own hanbok just for the "aesthetic" is cringey and inappropriate.

However, the more common kfashion i see online and in person are the typical tennis skirt, grid pattern, korean street fashion stuff, which may have been popularized by koreans, but in all honesty does not necessarily "belong" to us. so i don't think its fetishizing just because you like that style as it never held any cultural significance for korean people. i actually like when people dress in kfashion because its what I grew up seeing. i encourage people to try kfashion, but please do not wear a hanbok unless its worn with respect and purpose.

in short, i feel the same way about kfashion as i do about language. as other ppl above have stated its okay to learn a language if youre serious and respectful about it but dont go saying "nyaa, kawaii, sugoi desu, oppa, saranghae" just cuz you think it sounds cute.

Edited by taey
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Posted (edited)

A good chunk of current Korean and Japanese fashion is just 90s American fashion. Stylenanda is modern day grunge and Chuu is literally the aesthetic for Clueless. 

Edited by CloudFairFF7
I wanted to be more specific
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Posted

As an Asian, I think we feel more excited when someone tries things (food, clothing, etc) from our culture with an interest. Of course, there's a line (claiming to be this percent Asian, wearing traditional pieces, etc) that shouldn't be crossed, but generally things like Asian fashion can't really be fetishized, since fashion is a very global thing. 

Although it does bother me when someone wears something they obviously do not look good in, but that's just me. 

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Posted

What about the Taylor R. look where she elongates her eyes and whatnot?

I've seen people be made fun of on here for that or get called an asian wannabe because it's a dolly big eyed fashion in japan

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Posted (edited)

What about the Taylor R. look where she elongates her eyes and whatnot?

I've seen people be made fun of on here for that or get called an asian wannabe because it's a dolly big eyed fashion in japan

 

i feel like theres a fine line between asian style makeup and makeup that makes you look asian.
unlike fashion, clothes will not make you appear asian, but makeup can depending on how you wear it.

In cases like Taylor R and especially people like Ahri Pop, they wear makeup to appear more asian and to fit into that "kawaii" asian mold.
using makeup to add "aegyo sal" or "elongate/narrow" the eyes to appear more asian is fetishizing and considered yellow face.

Of course, these people never end up actually looking asian because.. well they're not..
but its the act of trying to get as close to true as possible that is fetishizing.

theres also just the fact that asian style makeup often tends to look freaking ridiculous on strong white features because asian style makeup is intended to enhance the features of.. asian people.. not white. lol and a lot of snowflakes tend to get asian style makeup wrong. ie. Taylor with her extremely strong aegyo sal.

of course, i reiterate this is my opinion on the matter, but other asian people might have different standards/limits.

Edited by taey
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Posted

 

i feel like theres a fine line between asian style makeup and makeup that makes you look asian.unlike fashion, clothes will not make you appear asian, but makeup can depending on how you wear it.

In cases like Taylor R and especially people like Ahri Pop, they wear makeup to appear more asian and to fit into that "kawaii" asian mold.
using makeup to add "aegyo sal" or "elongate/narrow" the eyes to appear more asian is fetishizing and considered yellow face.

Of course, these people never end up actually looking asian because.. well they're not..
but its the act of trying to get as close to true as possible that is fetishizing.

theres also just the fact that asian style makeup often tends to look freaking ridiculous on strong white features because asian style makeup is intended to enhance the features of.. asian people.. not white. lol and a lot of snowflakes tend to get asian style makeup wrong. ie. Taylor with her extremely strong aegyo sal.

of course, i reiterate this is my opinion on the matter, but other asian people might have different standards/limits.

 

the very strong aegyo sal trend puts me off a little because it looks so fake LOL and on white features it looks even worse, especially if they overdo the white glitter thingy (idk what it's called OTL)

asian eye makeup looks so out of place on white people because white people tend to have more deep set eyes, and asian makeup just isnt designed for that. 

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