The East Asian women + colored hair trope
(An extension of extraextraex’s post.)
Looking at the pictures above, it’s pretty easy to find the similarities. East Asian women with dyed purple/blue/red hair, usually in a streak. No matter how you look at this, this is an uncomfortably specific trend in media. Yeah, it looks cute, but after seeing this over and over again, it becomes a boring, racist trope. This originated from a variety of possibilities: the creators trying to “Americanize” the East Asian character, make them more “exotic”, or to show how unique this character is. She’s not a giggling schoolgirl or a delicate lotus flower, she’s different! See, she has a streak of purple hair (god forbid she dyes it any other color), look how radical that is, look at our modern Dragon Lady!
And yes, Knives dyed her hair to look like Ramona, and yes, Somni-451’s hair is like that to mark her as a clone, but these characters do not exist in a vacuum. You can justify why a character has a specific appearance, but in the end, this character was created, and contributes to stereotypes no matter the intent.
So the moral of this story is that your Asian character with a strip of purple hair isn’t original. It isn’t unique. No matter how innocent this appears to be, it can be detrimental to East Asian girls, since the characters that look like them have the same exact traits. It’s time to explore different ways of designing East Asian characters, instead of just slapping on some purple and calling it a day.
FIRST OF ALL
IS AN ASIAN WOMAN WEARING PART OF HER HAIR COLORED “RACIST????”
Does it OFFEND East Asian people?? Does it make fun of their culture?? Their race??? Becuase hearing bullshit like a piece of colored hair being RACIST it literally the most ridiculous fucking thing i’ve ever heard.
Sure it’s a popular stylistic choice but holy fuck don’t go accusing a popular stylistic choice and deem it as being racist without proof that it’s offending asian women for real jfc
I’m Asian, and i personally believe that wearing colored hair would look beautiful regardless of what race you are. Black, white, hispanic, asian, etc.
So please don’t go shitting on a stylistic choice and deem it as fucking racist. How about you go attack someone that’s deeming a race as “exotic” with proof that it is instead of complaining about the little shit involving characters in media. Y’all are never pleased
I am a Chinese-descent Indonesian, and I’ll just tell you why this offends me.
Now of course everyone can have their stance on anything. Some people may be offended by this, some may not be. This issue in particular do not at all make fun of East Asian Culture, so it’s not racist in that manner.
What it is, however, is simplifying and stereotyping. Now I only know a few of these female characters, so do correct me if I’m wrong, but what I’m seeing is that all of them except for Tina from Glee are some sort of “strong athletic fighter Asian woman”. I mean, sure, being athletic, strong, and confident isn’t a bad thing in itself, but when every other asian woman is portrayed that way, people start to develop a stereotype.
I’ve known many women of the Chinese ancestry through my lifetime, living here in South East Asia, but I can tell you that not once have I ever seen a woman with that coloured streak thing. not once.Instead I often see women with their whole hair dyed brown or golden, and I can understand. that. Getting that coloured streak requires you to bleach only that single streak of hair, which I think is just a lot of work. People would rather get their whole hair bleached and coloured.
I am not saying that the coloured streak thing is a bad style or whatever. I’m just asking, where did that even come from? Why is every other Asian woman in media like that? Even from this list alone, Blink and Psylocke from the same franchise has almost exact same hairstyles with exact same colours .
East Asian women and pretty much Asian people in general is more than that. We’re not just some “Kung Fu-fighting eccentric-haired purple-loving people” you know. Even just in the matter of hairstyle alone, a lot of us actually like it to stay black. Some of us like it a bit lighter, and only a handful of us actually want to dye it some unnatural colour. So yeah, I personally hate this trope, and I’d rather have Asian people represented as we actually are.