North Koreans don’t like women with big boobs: report

As if nukes, missiles and political prison camps weren’t bad enough.

The JoongAng Ilbo reports that having a full rack is seen as a disadvantage for women in North Korea.

This is in marked contrast to the South, where a thin figure and big breasts have become symbols of beauty.

According to defectors, if a woman appears well-endowed in the North, people think she is intentionally and lewdly stressing her femininity, and she can easily come to be regarded as a slut. You have an atmosphere that doesn’t allow women to wear revealing clothing, and the North is still a male-dominated society.

One defector from Hoeryong said she had a work friend with large breasts who often ate chives because she’d heard they make your boobs smaller. She added that she was surprised upon learning that women in the South actually have operations to make their breasts bigger.

Another defector said in the North, women with large breasts try to hide them. She was amazed that large breasts—something about which to be ashamed in the North—were considered a condition of beauty in the South.

  • Bob Bobbs

    I used to live near Kimpo with a rather large Canadian woman who did sun salutations every morning while spraying a goblet of wine around her room and hyper-ventilating. She believed that white men preferred Korean women because men were all latently homosexual and that Korean women’s bodies were more like those of little boys. Just sayin’.

  • ZenKimchi

    Sounds like the makings of a romantic comedy.

  • The Sanity Inspector

    / insert tasteless starvation joke here /

  • Andrew Barbour

    There is a wonderful short story to be made from this. Maybe I can come up with something.

  • Jang

    “Hide” is code for mutilate.

  • Robert Koehler

    And this is why I read my comments section.

  • silver surfer

    Not so long ago I was told by South Korean women that big boobs made you look stupid.

  • Craig Urquhart

    This was likely resentment that the Korean women are all in excellent shape and are, by and large, more atttractive than the foreign women. BTW, some of the foreign women I know say precisely the same thing about Korean men versus foreign men.

  • Jakgani

    She believed that white men preferred Korean women because men were all latently homosexual and that Korean women’s bodies were more like those of little boys…

    all latently homosexual?? I think she is looking at it the wrong way – if white men preferred womens bodies with slimmer, thinner shape and smaller breasts it would means they were more probably latently pedo’s rather than gay – due to the fact that they would prefer a smaller, lady with smaller breasts, rather than a LARGE Canadian lady with large in your way breasts.

    How would that make men gay? – the Canadian lady obviously has messed up thinking and should try a diet.

  • One for all

    I’ve heard that argument several times actually, from Korean/Western men AND women……….and a lot of the women were not out of shape in any way

  • Scott N

    what’s worse, having an operation to increase the size of your breasts or hiding your naturally large breasts?

  • Cloudfive

    In reply to you, Bob Bobbs and One For All: Categorizing the female bodies of an entire race/nationality in relation to another race is inherently racist and, in this case, probably homophobic. It doesn’t matter how “in shape” she is.

    Attractiveness is entirely subjective, although beauty ideals are shaped by symmetry, society and the fashion of its time. “Korean women are all in excellent shape and are, by and large, more attractive than the foreign women” is your personal opinion.

    Most of the police are the customers of various call girl services, and
    virtually every male in the country has been to see some sex worker in
    the past year. perhaps the only men who *don’t* go to some professional
    are the foreigners or those who have no connection this rather sordid
    aspect of the culture.

    I also take issue with this ^ comment from another thread re: prostitution in Korea, unless you have solid evidence to back up your statement.

  • yangachibastardo

    She sounds like a major asshole and quite frankly i find a quite annoyngly large number of Western women who make disaparing comments about women of other backgrounds and the men who date ’em.

    Somebody should really try to break down to those sore losers the concept that men who choose to be with partners from other cultures are not doing it cos they’re latent gays, closeted pedos or are looking for a submissive slave doll. They don’t even have necessarily a weird fetish, they simply happen to like a specific person for whatever reason

  • yangachibastardo

    In all fairness the last 2 times i was in Korea i noted a visible increase of large people comparing to 3-4 years ago

  • One for all

    I didn’t categorize, I simply said some people were in shape. I also stated what several people told me, I did not voice my opinion on anyone’s race/nationality ethnicity.

    Please don’t shoot the messenger……target the sheriff instead

  • Sanshinseon

    The attitude this article reports was also the rule in South Korea until the 1980s. I watched the transition taking place, firm breasts as not at all sexualized (as we know from the Joseon dynasty) to becoming objects of erotic desire and then a standard of attractiveness. Very much influenced by Western/American movies and other media, I do believe.

    I had a GF in ’83 with naturally large (by K standards) breasts altho otherwise slim, pretty face but at 21 had never had a single date until me. People referred to her physique disparagingly as “cow-like”, assumed she was stupid even though she was an SNU law student (one of VERY few female ones then). She seemed quite surprised (and then pleased) that I found her baby-feeding assets attractive, yes even a turn-on, when Korean men were so turned-off. Ah, those were the sweet comparative-advantage days….

  • Jeannine Weaver

    If you’re the author of the article, you’re the one who wrote it to begin with. :0)

  • yangachibastardo

    Fuckin’ globalisation made this kind of arbitrages almost impossible :)

  • que337

    I think big breasts women have been often considered ‘dumb’ in Korea. The notion has been more neutralized in SK, whilst in the cold North it seems not changed.

  • Cloudfive

    I don’t know whether to begin with your lack of reading comprehension or your humorless attempt to mix metaphors with Bob Marley lyrics…

  • Cloudfive

    The word “bimbo” comes from the west and often refers to blonde and/or big breasted women. These types of stereotypes are not limited to Korea.

  • Cloudfive

    I only come here for the comments. (No offense, comments are my favorite part of everything I read on the internet.):)

  • que337

    That might be a universal stereotype, but women attire that emphasizes cleavage looks, at least to me, very American or Western. I doubt not many Korean parents would welcome their daughters walking street with deep cleavage dress, which could be more often appreciated in private or stages for movie stars; Korean men would not appreciate their girlfriends wearing deep cleavage shirts in public. That does not mean that Koreans have more modest culture, I have to say.

  • SomeguyinKorea

    So, you’re saying they were f@cked in the head for no apparent reason?

  • Anonymous

    I believe it was the YWCA who claimed several years ago that 70% of Korean men had frequented prostitutes…But I think that number was grossly inflated as it probably counted visits to ‘room salons’ where nothing at all might have happened.

  • judge judy


  • Anonymous

    Here’s my favorite word which refers to big breasted women: exuberant.


  • One for all

    “In reply to you, Bob Bobbs and One For All”……..idiot

  • One for all

    who isn’t these days?

  • Shelton Bumgarner

    Huh. This is rather weird. When I was in South Korea I didn’t notice any tendency towards “big boobs” in Korean women. In fact, I think either what Koreans think is beautiful is different than what Westerners think is beautiful or there is some sort of thing against beautiful women being in the public eye. I would sit on the train and see entire trains of hot women, and yet in advertisements the women didn’t seem all that hot. Also, I often wondered why more South Korean women didn’t get their breasts (or teeth for that matter) done instead of their eyes. As for the North Koreans, simply read “Nothing To Envy” and that will give you some sense of what’s going on. I think the book says for a long time it was against the law in North Korea for a woman to ride a bike because it was considered too “sexually suggestive.” I’ve seen more sexually suggestive things in the dead of winter in Seoul when the women would wear thigh high go-go boots and short skirts.

  • Horace Jeffery Hodges

    Only the dear, respected leader up north is allowed to have big boobs.

    (And they’re already headed south . . .)

    Jeffery Hodges

    * * *

  • SalarymaninSeoul

    Being in excellent shape is not an opinion, though attractiveness may be. No scientific data, simply an eye test: a very large percentage of western women (and western men as well) are physically out of shape, while a far, far smaller percentage of Korean women are out of shape – judging merely on how fat they appear to be. You are right that attractiveness is a matter of personal taste as well as the fashion of the times; and while I cannot vouch for any specific person’s taste, it is pretty safe to say that the fashion of the times is not for 250 lbs obese women with bad hair, terrible complexions, horrible wardrobes and even worse attitudes.

  • The_Korean

    A tasteless asshole might have dropped a ๋‚˜๊ฒฝ์› or ์ด์ •ํฌ joke here, but I am too much of a gentleman.

  • Ella

    yeah. but it’s completely acceptable to wear butt-cheek baring shorts or miniskirts, right?!

  • Ella

    You can be very slim and completely out of shape at the same time. Wiggling fat on slim thighs is one nice example. And note that I don’t say anything about this being attractive or not, tastes are different. Also, the horrible wardrobes are a matter of taste…as are Peter-Pan-collar blouses that my grandma could have worn in combination with buttcheek-baring shorts, fake Louboutins and a fake LV handbag. No offense!

  • que337

    I do not think it is completely acceptable. But you made a good point that I would say Koreans are more stingy for the top and generous for the legs. :)

  • que337

    I do not think it is completely acceptable. But you made a good point that I would say that Koreans are stingier for the top and more generous for the legs. :)

  • SalarymaninSeoul

    Most people are out of shape. Period. Its just that aesthetically, the lean out of shape person is preferred by most people to the fat out of shape person. When we get into people who are in shape, the vast majority are lean – not skinny, mind you, but with less body fat.

  • Sanshinseon

    Yeah, big boobs = dumber is a very international stereotype — was even before Sarah Palin came along to bolster it. Koreans were always attracted to virginal-looking “innocent” girls, and notable breasts meant she’d already had one or more babies.

    Attire that emphasizes cleavage is still extremely rare in Korea, only employed by “stars” at public events. In my univ classrooms, NEVER on Korean (or Chinese) girls — sometimes there have been Mexican or East-European exchange-coeds sporting that look, showin’ off the ample that they got, and i was actually quite startled — hadn’t seen it IRL for so long… difficult not to stare, despite my rigid professional ethics.

  • will.i.aint

    …difficult not to stare, despite my rigid professional ethics.

    Your rigid what??

  • will.i.aint

    I often wondered why more South Korean women didn’t get their breasts (or teeth for that matter) done instead of their eyes.

    By and large, I think Koreans generally have really nice teeth. Especially considering that fact that braces are still not that common in Korea. And when you compare Koreans to the local competition (Chinese and Japanese) – there is no comparison.

  • SomeguyinKorea

    Actually, that didn’t last very long. Women with miniskirts were essentially sexually assaulted by police officers under the pretext that they were measuring their skirts to ensure that they were of a decent length. A direct result of this was that short shorts and miniskirts quickly went out of fashion. Most women were still wearing shorts (capris) and skirts well bellow the knees in the late ’90s. Little by little, university students in Seoul started showing a bit more skin, but baring a little bit of skin only became truly fashionable again in 2002 (you can thank Mina for that).

  • que337

    I appreciate you for the further elaboration. I think you’re correct. Here is an article (Korean language) on modern fashion history in SK:

  • Bobby McGill

    I think we’re all misreading this as what could actually be a pre-emptive move to prevent a run on silicon should disposable incomes rise.

  • Bob Bobbs

    Categorizing the bodies of an entire race/nationality in relation to
    another race is inherently racist no matter how one looks at it.

    – No, it’s not. Koreans are (on average) shorter than Danes (on average). That is not racism.

    In the
    case of Bob’s Canadian former roommate, probably homophobic too. It
    doesn’t matter how “in shape” or “large” she is.

    – Holy cow, women can be homophobic, too! And some of them get jobs teaching in Korea! Will the constant insults to the Korean race never end? How ever did they get through the Korean double-secret probation screening procedures? I suppose I should have ‘corrected’ her.

  • Cloudfive

    First of all, I didn’t have an issue with you, One For All or the people mentioned in your comments. I just find sweeping generalizations distasteful and ironic, especially if they come from the same people who cry foul over every trashy newspaper or television story that makes sweeping generalizations about them.

    After the quote from Craig Urquhart, it should have been “also, I have an issue with your statementโ€ฆ. virtually every male in the country has been to see some sex worker in the past year etcโ€ฆ”. I don’t know? Grammar is my Achilles’ heel that I’ve had to live with all my life. (sigh)

    I think describing someone as “rather large” or “in shape” when talking about their opinions on the bodies of others, editorializes that opinion. Do you get what I mean?

    I can live with that, and don’t need to start labelling(sic) people with -isms, but I understand how tempting it can be to do so once you’ve learned how effectively it lets you dominate conversations.

    This was probably the only time I used an “ism” in my comments. You however, called me a “feminist and anti-racist” – one more -ism word than me. Is that your way of trying to dominate the conversation?

    Lastly, your colorful description of your large-bodied Canadian roommate doing “sun salutations every morning while spraying a goblet of wine around her room and hyper-ventilating”, was entertaining. But I questioned how she could possibly do sun salutations while holding a goblet, since sun salutations require both hands. I imagined red wine, so it also sounds messy…

  • Guest


  • Lion McGuinness

    A lot of you seem to be taking this a little seriously. You have obviously culturally assimilated very successfully. Boobs are great – they certainly bump my wife up from 9.5 to 10.

  • Lion McGuinness

    Anyone who enjoys a public bath knows Korean men are in better shape than, say, me. They can’t match my moobs though!

  • Angel Chavez

    Damn it, i was here for the boob pics jijijijiji

  • Robert Koehler

    Sorry to disappoint. Might I suggest a Google search for Erica Campbell?

  • Thuan Lam

    Did North Korea really do that or this is just another another fake anti North Korea story?
    Female with proportional breasts and slender proportional bodies are considered good looking bodies females. Big breasts females are not attractive. Some males like big breasts females too.

  • Stephanie Vannoy

    Jesus, I’d hate to be a Korean’s daughter and to be called a slut. My breast are naturally proportioned. And I am a mix of Japanese and White. So, to hear all this bullshit is annoying. People are going to hate and people are going to love one another, that is just what the world is. People are different, and I wish this negativity would stop; but everyone has a right to their opinion. Oh well.

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