Many also believe she promoted “skin-whitening” methods.
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When it comes to standards of beauty, Koreans and idols are subjected to strict expectations on the ideal way to look. One of those standards of beauty that have raised anger from netizens is the topic of skin color and the idea that having “pale” skin is favorable, but “tanned” isn’t.
Recently, LOONA member JinSoul has come under fire for comments allegedly promoting the “beauty” that comes with pale skin.
LOONA has recently returned from a tour where they met ORBITs from different countries across the world. Despite concerns about the members’ well-being, the group successfully completed their shows and earned praise for their professionalism.
After returning, JinSoul was communicating with fans, and one messaged the idol, saying, “But how pretty is it that JinSoul’s refreshing features contrast with her white skin.” When speaking about the “white skin,” many assume that the fan is talking about how JinSoul is known for having “pale skin.”
Although the comment itself might not have been perceived as negative, Jinsoul’s response received negative reactions. The idol replied to the comment with, “I don’t have white skin though… Since this tour, I’ve tanned a lot *crying sound*”
Upon seeing the comment, many thought that JinSoul was explaining that she wasn’t happy that she had “tanned” and that her skin wasn’t as “white” as the fan was describing.
JinSoul then explained that she even dyed her hair black, thinking that it might make a difference, adding that it didn’t do what she wanted in the end.
So, I thought that if I dyed my hair black, I would look pale, right? I was excited, but it doesn’t. — JinSoul
The idol then went on to explain that she had searched for methods to try and combat the “tanning” and that her “pale skin” should return soon.
When the message was shared, netizens shared their anger that JinSoul seemed to be “promoting” the idea that having white or pale skin was better. In particular, it seemed disappointing considering how LOONA has always been praised for inclusivity.
See my problem is that, how are you in a gg that spreads a message about inclusivity and fighting against standards & stereotypes against women yet when we try to educate you, you respond by saying “i feel so wronged”.. like jinsoul come on 😭😭
— Shadow the Hedgehog kinnie (@Iove4eva) September 21, 2022
While others explained that it seems to be something ingrained in Korean society so much that idols don’t see the seriousness of their comments and focuses more on preference.
Another reason that netizens shared their anger was the increasing number of times the issue of “colorism” has been raised in Korean entertainment.
The Netflix series Single’s Inferno came under fire after the contestants seemed to make colorist comments praising the “fair” skin of Shin Ji Yeon.
Soloist BoA and aespa‘s Karina also came under fire for alleged “colorist” remarks.
BoA explained her first impression of Girls’ Generation‘s Hyoyeon, explaining, “She was very tanned.” Korean beauty standards have been known to consist of “pale skin,” and many thought that BoA’s comment had negative connotations.
The issue of Korean beauty standards has always been something that has raised concerns. Yet, the publicity of it by K-Pop idols on the topic of skin color is sensitive to many people and fans believe that it is a topic they need education on it.