Project MONOLIDS #stopeyeshaming
This project is very personal and close to my heart. I have small slanted demi hooded monolid eyes and growing up in The Netherlands with East Asian and Western beauty standards and dealing with (casual) racism wasn't easy.
I got to know more East-Asian people online who shared their thoughts and their experiences. I realized there is a whole community out there who has struggled or are still struggling and not really accepting their appearance and the shape of their eyes due to different reasons such as not feeling beautiful enough according to the beauty standards, not good enough, the pressure of society and family and friends, being reminded that we look different, being bullied, dealing with (casual) racism.
With this project I want to do a beauty shoot focussed on the beauty and the uniqueness of all different types of monolid eyes. I want to emphasize the beauty of monolid eyes of Asian females and males of different ages, that's why I started this project together with the photography duo Angela Huizer & Jani Yu.
The purpose of this project is to inspire people to embrace their unique monolid eyes and to be proud! No matter where you live. I want to create awareness among the East Asia community that there is more that one definition of beauty. Beauty comes in all forms! And luckily, the beauty standards in the West has changed the last decade and diversity is embraced. However, there is still a lack of Asian representation in countries in Europe and America. Asians are still being stereotyped and I would like to see that change. Asian representation matters and acceptance is important for the Asian community in the West.
The definition of beauty in East Asia is too narrow and it has a negative impact on the self-esteem of many people. Children shouldn’t grow up with this one kind of beauty ideal and people shouldn’t feel ashamed or feel less confident about their monolid eyes and get double eyelid surgery or any kind of plastic surgery for the wrong reasons. Diversity needs to be embraced by East Asian countries and the East Asian communities everywhere in the world. I want to make a statement that monolid eye shapes are just as beautiful as double eyelids. People don’t simply decide to dislike their eyes, society and the media teach them to.
Racism against Asian people was always there, but we never spoke up and we should't stay silent anymore. Due to Covid-19, the anti-asian racism got even worse, it changed into a more hateful and violent way. With this project and the stories shared by me and by other people who are a part of this project, I want to raise awareness about racism against Asian People. Whether it’s casual or violent racism. I want to make people realize, that it’s not okey to make fun of our eyes, to mock our race, to be hateful and violent and being racist. Treat others the way you want to be treated. We are all equal.
Change is needed!
#racism and #eyeshaming needs to be stopped!