Why the Japanese are Turning Their Nipples Pink

Why the Japanese are Turning Their Nipples PinkThere’s a scene in Haruki Murakami’s novel, Norwegian Wood, in which the main character Toru is watching an adult film with a friend, who says this about one of the actresses:

“Don’t you think her nipples are too dark for a high school girl a virgin?”

“Absolutely,” he answers.

I wondered what sense Western readers might make of this. Most probably just ignored it and moved on. Nipple hue was something I myself had never contemplated deeply until a Japanese woman I knew complained she was unhappy with hers because they were so brown (unlike mine, which happen to be pristinely pink). It turns out some women in Japan really feel this way. Why? “Because pink is cute,” she told me.

And there’s a belief in Japan that pink nipples denote purity, while brown ones … don’t. A female plastic surgeon I know who works in Tokyo put it this way: “Japanese girls want to have pink nipples because Japanese guys like them. For some Japanese men, the less sexual experience a woman has, the better. Little experience means she is clean and precious for them.”

I asked a Japanese guy, apropos of nothing, if he happened have a preference for pink. And he did. Several others confessed the same.

So what’s a girl to do? Well, an array of products can supposedly restore the lost pinkness of youth.

One is Virgin Pink, made by Coo Science Beauty, based in Tokyo. This cream has been around for years, and though known for nipple treatment, it’s actually intended for skin lightening of any blemished area of the body. (For Japanese women, the whiter the better, which is why parasols are so in.) A Virgin Pink representative said they sell 10 to 15,000 units a year, going for about $60 each.

Why the Japanese are Turning Their Nipples PinkA newcomer to the market, intended solely for brown-to-pink transformation, is Virgin Peach, put out by the Nagoya cosmetics company Glim. Unlike Virgin Pink, this one uses a pink henna dye, which they say becomes permanent after a while. And for half the price. A spokesperson said, “Our product is for a problem many women have,” which must be why sales have hit 30,000 since its debut two years ago. They are highest around Christmas and Valentine’s Day, when this kind of thing matters even more.

An Internet search turns up a slew of other panaceas for the pigmentally challenged, some of which are even targeting the English-speaking population: Bio-Woman Pink Cream, Finale Pink Nipple Cream, Happy Girl Natural Nipple Cream, and the somewhat less inspired, Spot Removing Cream.

Whatever name it goes by, compared to some body alterations available these days, this tweak is pretty minor. And if it makes women feel more pure, beautiful, and virginal, then I’d say they’re getting good bang for the buck.

Boobie cookies by braindamaged217

Virgin Peach photo courtesy Glim

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Daniel Krieger is a writer living in Japan. He has been writing for The New York Times, International Herald Tribune, The Japan Times, CNNGo, and other publications. Read more at danielkrieger.net ...read more

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