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What is “beautiful?” Depends who you ask! Beauty is a very subjective thing, and its definition changes wildly depending on who you ask. What’s ugly and hideous to one person is attractive and sexy to the next.

There’s no better example of this than the Japanese yaeba phenomenon. Some people in Japan think that a yaeba (八重歯), or snaggletooth, can be the cutest part of a woman. When those front teeth stick out or overlap, it just drives some Japanese men crazy. But why?

YaebaSome say that yaeba makes a woman look cute, almost childlike; like when a kid’s teeth aren’t fully grown in yet. Lots of cultures value signs of youthfulness – yaeba is just looking at youth in an unusual way.

Crooked teeth have become so appealing to some people that you can get a procedure called tsuke yaeba (付け八重歯) or “attached snaggletooth” to get your own, fake yaeba.

Want to get some fake chompers? Hop on over to Dental Salon Plasir in the Ginza district of Tokyo, one of several places across Japan where you can get tsuke yaeba.

Dental Salon Plasir offers a tsuke yaeba procedure that adds custom fitted, removable caps to your teeth for around the low, low price of about US$400.

Don’t think it’s worth the money? Then maybe their commercial will sell you on the procedure. Watch as a woman goes through the whole process of getting tsuke yaeba:

And if you’re still not entirely sold on the idea of getting some teeth capped, maybe the allure of fame will do it for you. As I talked about in our latest Sunday News post, there’s even a new idol group comprising solely girls with yaeba called TYB48.

They’ve got all the same looks as idol sensations AKB48 – plaid skirts, giant bows, and a young, innocent demeanor. The only way you that TYB48 looks from pop battalion AKB48 is their not-so-perfect teeth.

It should be obvious (but still worth mentioning) that, like any other aspect of beauty, the attraction to yaeba isn’t anywhere near universal. In the grand scheme of things, the attraction to yaeba is very niche, but it’s undeniable that the attraction to yaeba is pretty unique to Japan.

Beauty exercisesTo me, the yaeba phenomenon is interesting because emphasizes that all over the world, people sometimes do weird things for beauty. After all, you don’t have to look far to see the strange, sometimes harmful things that people do for beauty, like liposuction, Botox treatment, tattooed eyebrows or lipliner, or harsh, orange tans.

If anything, the whole yaeba trend seems pretty innocuous in comparison. Unlike a lot of other beauty procedures, tsuke yaeba is completely temporary and harmless.

What do you think about yaeba? Is it cute? Would you get some fake yaeba for yourself? Let me know in the comments.

Read more: Inventor Spot, New York Times, Sociological Images

  • Impeding Lies

    Love it! So cute!

  • 子山

    xD wwwwwwww

  • Rupert Ducker

    ILLEGALIZE ORTHODONTICS ! ! ! This yaeba thing has always been the very first thing I look out for in an attractive woman ! ! Natural, beautiful, idiosyncratic, healthy + functional !

  • MFH

    Wait…
    So my crooked right fang is considered cute there?
    Wait, do this also applies to a man? Nope?
    Either way, i lose.

  • Tara McInerney

    Hey, I know old thread is old, but just in case you were still interested on this topic-
    The phenomenon of females taking on qualities of youthfulness or childhood in order to appear attractive is called neoteny. It’s the name reason people find small dogs cute, they look like babies. You can find a lot of information online about neoteny and many people have documented it. Even females removing their bodily hair is a neotenous pursuit. I find it very interesting to look at so I hope one year later this is still interesting to you too!

  • Eve

    Oh, COME ON … how NOT funny – Lederhosen are only worn in Bavaria (and Thuringia, maybe), aka in the South (I will not say “where the hillbillies live”).
    The rest of us are dressed like – hmm, Americans, but with less Spandex? *ouch*

  • Steve

    …Downton Abbey… The Office…

  • Jazzy

    That’s horrible!!!!

  • jonesy974

    It’s not so much the pointy teeth that bother me, which I guess is what the whole yaeba craze is. My quip is with the teeth being crooked as hell. That girl who got it done in the video didn’t look too bad because she had straight, well taken care of teeth with some fangs attached to them. But when some of those girls have teeth that zig-zag like a fuckin zipper, ON TOP of having yaeba, that’s when I hit the “no…just..n-n…pleas do something about that shit” threshold.