Driving Miss Daisy?
Probably not. When the sun comes out you can guarantee that Chinese women will do whatever it takes to cover their face from the sun (even if it is a few degrees warm!). This includes carrying the umbrella, wearing a flamboyant hat (take note of the photo!), and/or applying lots of 'face whitening cream' as possible. The Asian fear is prevalent that the darker the skin the less beautiful you are, and in China it is no surprise to see that women will take all kinds of measures to make sure that they have that glittering shiny ‘white’ look. It’s also a socially status symbol thing for Asian women to must maintain as fair a skin as possible (i.e. their close circle friends will also look and comment on them should they have a slight whisker in sight of a tan on their face!). In China women also drink Collagen (naturally occuring proteins in mammals in skin tissue), and other similar products to make their skin more fair and shiny. I have overheard Chinese women gossip and say things like: ‘Oh my, you look so beautiful and white today!’, or worse enough ‘Oh dear, what happened to your face, why so dark today?’. The topic is considered a serious source of discussion for housewives around Asia.
On the other hand, in Asia, if a man carries an umbrella or applies any kind of lotion on their face to protect them from the sun then they are considered to be feminine (this includes sun lotion!). And if a man is accompanying his girlfriend or wife in hot weather then he must carry the umbrella for her otherwise he is not considered a gentleman (very true in China). This is perhaps one of the reasons why in most Asian countries you see lots of fair skinned ladies, whilst the men are darker skinned (more apparent in countries like India, Sri Lanka, Singapore, China, and others).
Social taboo it may be, but you can be sure that Asian women, such as the one in the photo, can enjoy being Daisy Werthan for as long as they can.
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