Of being straight, white and beautiful
How many beauty ads do we have that show how important for us Filipina women to use astringents and whitening creams to whiten and make our face beautiful? How many shampoo commercials shown with models who have long, black and shining hairs ? Baka di muna mabilang.
Kahit san ka lumingon, TV ads, posters along the EDSA, media promotions all show that only those women with fair and white complexions have the chance to be successful in their career. And even one shampoo commercial before has this line, “Baka nakapangasawa ng mayaman”, dahil may long, black and straight hair yong model and she is the envy of her circle of friends.
And because of this media influence, I also followed the “in” thing. Because I have this course and curly hair type with my 153 cm height and a morena complexion, only Carla, my hairdresser, gives me the feeling that I am beautiful thru his masterpiece in straightening and relaxing my hair. Poor Zonah!!! I ended up savings only for that “relaxing” thing and get an even drier hair strands. But what can I do. It is the dictate of the society or I would say the influence of our culture to be accepted by the group.
Then one day I meet a man who really changed the way I look up to my hair and to my skin color.
It was 2004 when I married to a German husband. Super proud siya sa pagkamorena ko. But he insisted to let my hair grow longer. ( Ever since I worked, I opted for a short and brown colored hair to save time and money from straigthening and relaxing.) Although di ko talaga type na mahaba ang hair sinubukan ko nalang magpahaba ng hair. So pagdating ko dito sa Germany laking gulat ng mga friends at relatives ng husband ko how I am able to get that very beautiful, shoulder- length curly hair. Nako pakiramdam ko at that time I was the newly crowned Miss Universe.
So from that time on hinayaan ko nalang pahabain ang hair ko and to think na the cheapest shampoo and cut here in Germany is 43Euro, di bale na kulot at mahaba yong hair ko kasi sa pananaw ng mga German, sexy at beautiful naman yong hair ko. And thanx to the cold weather dito kasi di na kulot yong hair ko lalo na sa winter.
And with regard to this white and beautiful notion comes this “erase the face” action. I am the only one who gives this name “erase the face” which means the use of astringent to whiten the face. But actually I mean to erase the face because in reality one is really removing the outer layer of the skin. Sabi nga ni Noreen, my English- woman “mom” here, “Why on earth do Asian women use this astringent to whiten their face in fact they have the best skin color in the world?” Agree ako dun sa comment niya. But am really wondering bakit sa kultura natin ang maputi, straight ang hair ay siyang tinatawag na maganda? Where do we get this concept? I hope I am not offending the beauty companies which sell this astringent and straingteners. But my point is Pinay beauty is world class and even envied by most westeners dahil tayo ang may mixture ng ibat-ibang lahi and which really make us beautiful.