Latest Asian Trend: This $1300 Camera Will Give You the Perfect Selfie

There’s no denying it — Asians love taking selfies. How much do we love them? Apparently, enough to dish out $1300 for a camera designed specifically for taking selfies. Talk about obsession– uh, I mean.. devotion.

We’re not quite sure when selfies became a worldwide phenomenon, but we are sure that this trend is still going strong and Asians are at the forefront of this selfie-obsession. TIME magazine created a list of top 100 selfie-crazed cities in the world. As you may have expected, there are quite a number of Asian cities on this list. In fact, the world’s most selfie-obsessed cities are both located in the Philippines.

Well I’m sure they would all love to get their hands on a Casio EX-TR35, more commonly known as “the selfie camera.”

So how exactly is this camera catered to selfie-taking? Well for starters, the camera takes away the usual difficulties of physically taking the selfie. There are multiple buttons on the device which allows you to hold the camera in whatever angle you’d like. If reaching out to touch the button ruins the aesthetics of your picture (oh, the struggle!) there is voice control and a count down feature. Tired of physically holding the camera? Well the Casio EX-TR35 has a stand which can help you take your picture from afar.

If that horrid habit of blinking gets in the way of your perfect selfie, have no fear! The Triple Shot feature takes three continuous shots with a single press of the shutter button to prevent accident blinking.

And the quality of these selfies? Well a selfie camera wouldn’t be a selfie camera without offering special effects. Allegedly, the various “make up” options can whiten, brighten and smooth out your skin. So after a few edits, voilà! You have the perfect selfie.

Many individuals, such as Kai W who reviews this product in the video below, cannot justify spending $1300 on a selfie camera, but the woman in the video (who ends up taking 2395925 selfies) clearly gets it.

Watch the video below and let us know what you think. Would spend $1300 for the perfect selfie?

Proof That Kpop Isn’t Just For Koreans

It’s officially summertime and you know what that means– it’s time for another KCON. KCON is the first ever Southern California K-pop convention that allows fans to celebrate Korean entertainment and culture. 

We still have a few months before KCON 2014, but the recent confirmation of appearances by Girls Generation, CNBlue and IU have us sitting on the edge of our seats. We can’t help but reminisce about our experience last year and how much it opened our eyes. KCON showed us that it’s perfectly fine to be a Kpop fan even if you’re not Korean.

For today’s #FBF (Flashback Friday), we’ve decided to show you why you should be excited for this year’s KCON. Here is what we learned a year ago:


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I first became interested in Kpop with the release of DBSK’s Hug in 2004. Like any young fangirl, I blew up my social media sites with pictures and videos of my newfound love. However, I received an overwhelming amount of criticism from friends:

“But you’re not Korean?”
“Why are you into this? You don’t even speak Korean.”
“Korean music is really weird.”
“But you don’t understand what they’re saying.”

Fast forward 9 years and the rise of Kpop has become a world-wide phenomenon. The very same people who questioned my interest in Kpop are now jamming to Big Bang and criticizing me for not hearing the latest song.

The point is, times have changed and this weekend was quite the eye opener. It had not yet hit me that many of the Kpop fans I knew weren’t actually Korean. In fact, when a Korean co-worker told me that most of the hardcore fans aren’t Korean at all, I assumed she was joking.

I was obviously proved wrong.

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This past weekend was the 2nd annual KCON– a Kpop music festival held in the United States which presents an opportunity for American fans to come together and share their love for Korean Music. I expected the crazy fangirls, the intense cosplay, the neon-colored fan signs and the korean food galore. What I didn’t expect, and was pleasantly surprised to discover, was the cultural diversity of the event.

Upon entering the festival, I was met with a sea of color. No, not the bright pink Mnet bags and the neon green Bibigo balloons. The palette of ethnicities was beyond impressive. Because of my initial experience with Kpop, I had expected this festival to largely consist of Koreans along with a handful of Pan-Asians. I assumed that I would meet the same criticism that my friends initially gave me about being unable to understand the language, but a visit to the dance workshop area proved otherwise.

The stage was covered with every race you could think of: Caucasians, Latinos, African Americans and various other non-Asian folk. Not only did East Asians show their presence, but Southeast Asians and South Asians did as well. Fans who clearly stated they were not Korean were singing every single word of their favorite songs and impressively showcasing the intricate dance moves to these songs. Yes, these fans took time out of their lives to memorize lyrics to Korean songs without actually knowing Korean. Now that’s dedication.

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The more time I spent at the festival, the more I came across cultural diversity. I came across a Caucasian man, well into his 30s, who excitedly purchased a heart-shaped fan with the pictures of 2am printed on it. I came across a group of Latina girls sporting G-Dragon hats, shirts and even sneakers. I came across a non-Asian boy, who couldn’t have been older than 12, perform the choreography of Growl so well that even EXO would have been impressed.

I came out of this KCON experience realizing that the beauty of this festival was not in the performers and the pretty concert. The beauty was in the fans who attended. Never once was anyone criticized for their racial background or their inability to speak Korean. This was a place for fans, whatever color they may be, to get together and celebrate their fandom. This was a place where it didn’t matter where you came from and how you looked — you were accepted because you loved the same thing.

As Korean American rapper, Dumbfounded, mentioned during his panel “Asian Americans in Hip-Hop”, Kpop is special because of the different kinds of people it can bring together. Clearly, Kpop should be applauded for the array of fans it has been able to captivate.

Good job, Kpop, you’re doing it right.

 

 


This story was originally published on Aug. 27, 2013.

Photo courtesy of The Hollywood Reporter. 

 

Childhood Photos of Your Favorite Asian Celebs

Remember that awkward pre-teen stage? No matter how many times you try to forget that horrid chapter of your life, the mental images are probably burned into your memory. Well we have some good news. Everyone goes through strange childhood stages. Everyone. That includes some of your most favorite Asian celebrities!

So if you still feel like you’re going through an awkward phase, check out the photos below. Some of the most gorgeous Asian celebs had their facepalm moments too. There’s still hope for all of us!


 

1. Steven Yeun

Then:

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Now:
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2. Sandra Oh

Then:
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Now:
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3. Brenda Song 

Then:
brenda song 1 brenda song 2

Now:
A|X Armani Exchange & ELLE Host A Night Of Disco Glam

 



4. Vanessa Hudgens 

Then:
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Now:
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5. Bruno Mars 

Then:
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Now:
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6. Kristen Kreuk

Then:
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Now:
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7. Mindy Kaling

Then:
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Now:
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8. Jackie Chan

Then:
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Now:
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9. Daniel Henney

Then:
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Now:
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10. Jenna Ushkowitz

Then:
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Now:
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Coca Cola Invents Creative Caps That Give “2nd Lives” to Bottles

Coca Cola is responsible for tons and tons of plastic bottles discarded every day after people are done consuming their beverage. As you can imagine, this can be quite damaging to our environment.

Thankfully, Coca Cola is well aware of this and wants to put forth various solutions to the issue. One such solution is the environment-friendly campaign launched in Vietnam called “2nd Lives.”

For this campaign, Coca Cola has teamed up with award-winning ad agency Ogilvy & Mather China to invent creative, fun and usable caps that will encourage people to reuse their bottles.

There have been 16 new bottle caps created which can turn your used Coca Cola bottle into a lamp, a pencil sharpener, a spray bottle, a salt & pepper dispenser, a bubble wand, a weight, a soap dispenser, a water gun and much more.

Clearly, this campaign has heart behind it. Check out these “2nd Lives” caps in action in the following video.


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Korean Humanitarian Uses Taekwondo to Change the Lives of Syrian Refugee Children

The Zaatari refugee camp in Jordan began in 2012 and has opened its doors to over 100,000 people who have fled their homes due to the Syrian civil war. Charles Lee, a South Korean humanitarian, witnessed much of this chaos during his 14 years spent living in the Middle East.

More than half of the Syrian refugees in the Zaatari camp were children under the age of 18. These children lost their home, their school, their friends and even family members. Understandably, the children were in a state of despair. Lee felt that he needed to do something to lift the spirit of these children.

He then recalled being inspired by his experiences with Taekwondo back home in Korea. Recognizing the positive teachings of the sport, he decided to open a Taekwondo school at the Zaatari refugee camp in July 2013.

“These children have seen their family members killed and tortured,” Lee recalls. “My ultimate goal is to raise them to be he next generation of leaders. And Taekowndo is the right tool to deliver that message.”

Has it helped the children? Absolutely.

 

The small group of 60 kids has now turned into a school with classes four days a week and a wait-list three digits long.

Parents claim that the martial arts help their children gain a sense of sportsmanship and helps them keep active in the camp. Most importantly, parents have said the training helps their children cope with the trauma of the civil war.

Currently in production, After Spring is a documentary which takes an even closer look at the Taekwondo class by following the families and students in Lee’s class.

The filmmakers are currently raising funds to travel back to Jordan and explore deeper into the stories of Mr. Lee and his students. To support them, check out their kickstarter here.

Take a sneak peak at After Spring below and learn more about the documentary here.

Unbelievable Photo Shoot: Models Dive 25 Meters Underwater

Montreal-based photographer Benjamin Von Wong has truly outdone himself this time. Von Wong has put together a breathtaking photo shoot all done underwater.

The photo shoot took place 25 meters under the sea in a 50-year-old sunken shipwreck off the coast of Bali. As you can imagine, a lot was expected from the models who had to dive the 25 meters and hold their breath for the perfect shots.

Each model was handpicked by Von Wong and had to be experience freedivers. That meant they had to be accustomed to diving without oxygen tanks. Instead of the usual photo and lighting assistants, this photo shoot required the help of experienced safety divers who provided oxygen to the models from their oxygen tanks.

And don’t get us started on how dangerous this shoot was! There were times when the models needed to be tied down to the ship so they wouldn’t float away. Creepy? You bet. One wrong move could have made this photo shoot a fatal disaster.

Luckily, Von Wong had the difficult photoshoot under control. Beautiful, flowing dresses were provided by Bali-based designer Ali Charisma. The dresses helped to achieved the look of mermaids who would lure sailors into the depths of dark waters using their beauty.

Was it worth the risk? We certainly think so. The photos are beyond breathtaking and the two models, Nora Li and Camilla Argent, are doing just fine.

Check out the behind-the-scenes video to get a more in-depth look at this complicated photo shoot.

 

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BEHIND THE SCENES PHOTOS:
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(SOURCE) 

“Grandma in Her 20’s” Gets Her Youth Back

 

The debate of the day is (once again) plastic surgery.

There are those who do not condone plastic surgery despite it’s all-time high rates in Asia and there are those who believe altering one’s appearance through surgery is the same as altering one’s appearance through make up.

Well this is finally a plastic surgery case that may gather the support of both parties. In fact, many people who disapprove of plastic surgery have admitted to understanding this particular case.

 

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It was nearly impossible to correctly guess the age of 28-year-old Moon Young Sun. Going against the Asian stereotype which says Asian women are all blessed with eternally youthful looks, Sun Young has already been mistaken for as a grandma numerous times and has even gained the nickname “Grandma in her 20’s.”

Many have associated her old appearance to her difficult, poverty-stricken life. That certainly played a factor to her teeth which were noticeably rotting because she could never afford dentistry work.

Recently, Sun Young made an appearance on “Let’s Beauty.” You may remember this Korean television program as the show that made a pair of twins completely unrecognizable. The purpose of this show is to “help those with special circumstances or people who are too ugly to feel confident in their life.” The participant facing “special circumstances” will have their plastic surgery sponsored by the television program and audiences follow along during the transformation.

Sun Young went through a number of procedures to change her face and, most importantly, her teeth. The total amount of procedures were estimated to be around $100,000.

Since her appearance on the show, Sun Young’s story has been going viral. Many people seem to agree that the work she received was much more meaningful than someone simply wishing to look prettier.

“She certainly deserved the help she received, (especially) for her teeth, at the age of 29 she almost didn’t have any upper teeth left, that must have been really hard for her!” says an allkpop commenter.

In addition to a prettier appearance, many people are pointing out the various health hazards that come along with rotting teeth and how surgery is beneficial if used to tackle these health risks. Others have pointed out that this will help her issue of bullying which can very seriously affect someone’s emotional and mental state.



(source)

 

This Japanese Dessert Looks Just Like A Giant Water Drop

This Japanese dessert has recently gained quite a bit of viral fame. After all, who wouldn’t be intrigued by a cake that looks just like a drop of water?

This intriguing dessert is called Mizu Shingen Mochi and can be translated to water shingen mochi. As the name indicates, this dessert is actually a variation of a traditional “shingen mochi” rice cake. The consistency is said to be similar to soft and sticky mochi.

The rare dessert is created using water from the Southern Japanese Alps and is served with kinako soybean powder and brown sugar syrup.  The water is apparently solidified into a solid shape, but feels like it can break with just a poke. Apparently, the cake will melt like water in your mouth, but is extremely tasty. The cake is so delicate that if it is not consumed in 30 minutes, it will melt away.

By now, you’re probably itching to get your hands on one of these. Unfortunately, mizu shingen mochi are exclusively produced by the Kinseiken Seika Company and only available in two locations in Japan:

Kinseiken Daigahara shop:
Address: 2211 Daigahara, Hakushucho, Hokutoshi, Yamanashi 408-0312
Tel: +81-551-35-2246
Open: 9a.m. to 6p.m.
Closed: Thursdays

 
Kinseiken Nirasaki shop:
Address: 154 Kotagawa, Nakadamachi, Nirasakishi, Yamanashi 407-0262
Tel: +81-551-25-3990
Open: 9a.m. to 6p.m.
No scheduled holidays

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(Source 1, 2)

Breathtaking Photos of Hong Kong in the “Follow Me To” Series

By now you’ve probably heard of photographer Murad Osmann. This is the guy who has gained quite a bit of popularity for his photo series called Follow Me To.

Follow Me To documents Osmann’s journey as he travels around the world with his girlfriend Nataly Zakharova, who leads the way.

In fact, Osmann openly says that Nataly is the inspiration behind the photo series. The Follow Me To series began in 2011 in Barcelona. “The first photo happened in Barcelona while we were on vacation. Nataly was a bit annoyed that I was always taking pictures of everything, so she grabbed my hand and tried to pull me forward. That said it didn’t stop me from doing photos while she was pulling me. So that’s how it all started.”

Clearly, Osmann was onto something. The popularity of the photo series has given him over a million followers on Instagram.

Much to our delight, we noticed that one of their favorite spots seems to be Hong Kong. We’ve never seen pictures quite as breathtaking. Check out the photos of the couple’s journey in Hong Kong below.

Be sure to follow Osmann on Instagram and support his official website here.

The 1600 pandas exhibition in Hong Kong.

 A junk boat in Hong Kong.

 

 

Hong Kong.

Ten Thousand Buddhas Monastery in Hong Kong.

 

Hong Kong Disneyland.

 

Hong Kong nightlife.

The Temple.

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11-Year-Old Invents a “Spill-Proof Cup” For Grandfather with Parkinsons

Just last week we brought you the touching story of Angelo Casimiro. The Filipino teen created footwear which can can generate electricity by simply walking. The 15-year-old was inspired by the poverty around him and recognized that this invention could truly help those who do not have access to electricity.

Well, we’ve found yet another youngin’ who proves that brilliant ideas don’t always come from the minds of adults.

11-year-old Lily Born observed the many struggles of her grandfather who has Parkinson’s disease. Born, who was adopted from China, began imagining a cup which could help her grandfather drink without spilling the liquid.

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From this, Born created the Kangaroo cup. The Kangaroo cup has three legs which elevate the body of the cup and creates a very stable base. Additionally, the rim of the cup is curved inward so no drink splashes out as you use or transport the cup.

Born began by experimenting with moldable plastic and went on to make a ceramic version at a local pottery studio. Her father recognized what a great creation it was and the two embarked on an adventure to JingDeZhen, China where the model was refined and a manufacturer was found to create ceramic Kangaroo cups.

Currently, the Born family is raising funds to create plastic versions of the Kangaroo cups which are more durable. The plastic version will even have more comfortable grips and come in all sorts of colors.

Clearly, Lily Born is one of many children who prove that the imagination of a kid can go a long way.

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