Even After Being Bullied Mercilessly, Harnaam Kaur Learned to Embrace Her Beard

Kids can be cruel. This was certainly the case for Harnaam Kaur who started growing facial hair at the young age of 11.

“I got bullied badly,” she recalled. “At school I was called a ‘beardo’ and things like ‘shemale’ and ‘sheman.’”

Harnaam Kaur has polycystic ovary syndrome which causes thick hair growth. In a desperate effort to look more like the other girls at school, Kaur would try waxing, bleaching and shaving, but her efforts proved only temporary. The hair would grow back quickly and in some cases, more thicker.

Unable to stop the hair growth, Kaur was forced to face cruel taunts and even online death threats from people who didn’t accept her.

“I can laugh about it now,” Kaur admits, “but back then it affected me so badly that I began to self harm because it felt better than all the abuse I was getting. I’d talk to people with a hand over my face and I wore baggy, tomboy clothes to cover up the hair on my chest and arms. I didn’t want to go outside my house because I couldn’t take the stares from strangers so I’d lock myself in my room. It got so bad that I just didn’t want to live any more.”

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Her outlook on life suddenly changed when she decided to be baptised as a Sikh – a religion where it is forbidden to cut body hair. Her parents were originally opposed to the idea. They believed that she would not be able to get a job or a husband with her beard, but Kaur was determined to turn a new leaf. She knew she needed a new outlook on life and she needed a way to end the suicidal thoughts.

Her decision has helped her embrace her physical appearance.

“I would never ever go back now and remove my facial hair because it’s the way God made me and I’m happy with the way I am,” she says. “I feel more feminine, more sexy and I think I look it too. I’ve learned to love myself for who I am nothing can shake me now.”

With her new-found confidence, Kaur has no problem doing the things that made her uncomfortable before: wearing dresses, putting on jewelry and getting her nails done. She even shares her story to the public despite death threats.

“All that matters to me at the moment is that I love myself,” Kaur explains. “I love my beard and all my other little quirks – my tattoos, my scars, stretch marks and blemishes. I want other women to find the strength that I have. If I had any message it would be to live the way you want – it’s your journey and it’s your life.”

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Image of The Day: The Best ‘Attack on Titan’ Cosplay EVER

Japanese manga series Attack on Titan has received quite a bit of fame since it began in 2009. The past few years alone have been an indicator of the manga’s large success.

In 2011, Attack on Titan won the Kodansha Manga Award in the shōnen category. Nearly all of the volumes made it onto The New York Times Manga Best Seller list  and the Young Adult Library Services Association in the United States named the series one of its “Great Graphic Novels for Teens.” So far, over 22 million copies have been sold in Japan.

So what sort of manga can possibly attract this much attention? Well Attack on Titans happens to be about gigantic humanoid creatures called Titans who devour and destroy humans. After a massive attack, the remaining humans were left to live confined in concrete walls. After a 100-year absence, the Titans mysteriously reappear and humans must deal with the vicious creatures once more.

Clearly, this violent series isn’t the usual dose of “cute” that our Audrey readers typically prefer, but this little girl is here to prove to you that she can make absolutely anything cute.

This adorable bit of cosplay is from the Fancy Frontier comic and cosplay event in Taiwan. The cutie is dressed as Attack on Titan character Sasha Braus. The character is known to have a large appetite so, to our delight, the tiny girl appears to be nibbling away at food.

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What Happens When Asian Kids Swap Outfits With Their Grandparents

The Singaporean artist simply known as “Qozop,” proves that age is just a number in many ways.

For instance, the artist appears to be rather new to the scene. Qozop’s facebook emerged late last month and the official blog has only two posts thus far. In fact the artist is such a mystery that the about me is kept plain and simple. It reads, “There is nothing special about me. I am just an artist who has caught a picture-making sickness.”

Despite Qozop’s “young” talent, the artist has already picked up quite a bit of attention. Qozop has been featured in Design TAXI, Demilked and Huffington Post.

The art that has sparked attention is Qozop’s series titled “Spring — Autumn.” He photographed pairs of relatives, such as parents and kids or grandparents and grandchildren, then had them exchange outfits.

“Fashion (other than wrinkles) is one of the best tell-tales of how old a person is, or what generation they hail from,” Qozop writes. “Skinny jeans just aren’t a thing for old people. But! Imagine a world where people of a certain age need not necessarily dress a certain way.”

Many viewers have interpreted the series as an exploration of identity and age, especially within Asian Americans.

Take a look at the entire series of Asian youth trading outfits with their parents and grandparents.

 

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This Adorable Video Will Make You Want to Visit Rabbit Island

In Japan, the island of Ōkunoshima has become a well-known tourist attraction. However, the popularity of this island may not be for reasons that you would typically expect from a tourist spot. The main attraction of Ōkunoshima island are the adorably, fluffy rabbits which scamper all about the area.

The island served as a secret military installation in World War II. The Japanese used the island to produce poisonous gas. Because the island was far enough from the major cities, the army believed it would be the perfect location to experiment with dangerous mustard gas.

Unfortunately, the story gets rather sad here. Rabbits were brought onto the island as test subjects for the poison. At the end of WWII, the facility was shut down and the rabbits were released into the wild.

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According to the Los Angeles Times, it is said that only eight rabbits were released into the wild by school children, but with the predator-free environment, the bunnies multiplied and became a group of over 300.

The rabbits, who have become so accustomed to humans that they have no problem hopping into human arms, gave the island its popular nickname.

In the following video, a young girl is seen attracting a swarm of bunnies. Needless to say, it’s too cute not to watch.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_ThAvnJVSUo

 

 

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Fall In Love With Japan’s Women’s Hockey Team

Any fan of Japan’s women’s hockey team will admit that they don’t exactly expect the girls to take Olympic gold anytime soon– but the team is loved anyway.

Although the team places second in every Asian Winter Games since 1996, they are ranked 10th in the world and generally struggle with international competition. In fact, Japan’s spot at the Sochi Games is the first time in the country’s history that it qualified into the Olympics in women’s hockey.

Despite this, Japan’s women’s hockey team is consistently a fan favorite. They’ve been described as “the smiley-est group ever known.” This is perfect seeing as the team’s nickname is “Smile Japan.”

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The girls are known for their positive energy and love of celebration. Because of this, they have gained a handful of fans despite their scores at Sochi.

“We hoped to get a better result, but we are still positive,” one of the players said when Japan lost 4-0 to Germany. “We wanted to make our fans smile for us. Despite this, we hope we can still make them smile.”

This doesn’t seem like a very difficult task for the girls at all. Upon arriving at Sochi, the team was given some practice time. How did they utilize it? Certainly not by running drills or practicing every second they were given. Instead, they took pictures, played around in the ice and relished every moment of being on Olympic ice.

Check out the super cute pictures below.

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Sochi Olympics Ice Hockey Women Yoko Kondo, Aina Takeuchi

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Is This Sports Illustrated Airline Safety Video Inappropriate?

Air New Zealand needed a new way to attract attention for their airline safety video. Their solution? Team up with Sports Illustrated Swimsuit models for a video they’re calling “Safety in Paradise.”

The video includes Jessica Gomes, a beautiful Portuguese Chinese model, and Chrissy Teigen, a Norwegian Thai model married to John Legend. We were excited to learn that two Asians were part of this video, but it quickly became clear to us that many people were upset with it. 

Among those upset with the airline safety video was Feminist commentator Deborah Russell, a professor at Massey University in New Zealand.

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“I’m going to be sitting there worrying about the male passengers sitting next to me leering at the beautiful women on the screen,” Russell told the New Zealand Herald. “I’m a captive audience for the safety video, but suddenly there are going to be put in front of me a whole lot of references to sex and sexuality.”

Russell isn’t the only one who has a negative reaction to “Safety in Paradise.” Many people claim that the video is hardly about safety rules at all. Instead, the focus is on all the dangerously tight bikinis and slow-motion hair flips.

Check it out for yourself and tell us what you think.

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Beautiful A Cappella Version of “Valentine” by Kina Grannis

Although Kina Grannis is often known as a YouTube personality, she had recorded and self-released two albums prior to the debut of her YouTube channel. Of course, we have to give credit to YouTube– it not only catapulted her into fame, it helped her land a contract with Interscope Records.

The Japanese American  guitarist and singer-songwriter released the official music video to her song “Valentine”  in 2010. It won the hearts of many and has gathered over 16 million views on YouTube so far. Clearly, it has turned into a holiday favorite.

Now, Grannis is giving fans another treat just in time for the romantic holiday. Just a few days ago, she released a beautiful a cappella version of “Valentine.” The song is only a few days old and it already has over 100,000 views.

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Why create a new version of the beloved song?

“It’s Valentine’s week,” Grannis explains. “I always feel like I just need to go back and show a little love to Valentines because why not.”

Check out the a cappella version below. If you haven’t seen the original music video, be sure to check that out as well.

Happy Valentine’s Day Audrey readers!

 

The Ultimate List of Adorable Asian Babies


 

Adorable Asian Baby Overload
 (click here to see them all) 
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“We’re not quite sure when this trend started, but cute Asian babies rank right up there with puppies and memes when it comes to social media sites. A quick scroll through tumblr will mean squeals upon squeals because its covered with, you guessed it, adorable babies. Here are a few of our favorites.”


Adorable Asian Babies With Puppies
(click here to see them all)
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“What could possibly be better than puppies or cute babies? How about puppies AND adorable Asian babies. (Yes, we’re being cheesy and we took it there, but lets be honest- you’re gonna look through these pictures anyway)”


Adorable Asian Babies (Halloween Costume Edition)
(click here to see them all)

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“Fun-sized candy bars, fake spiderwebs and (much to our delight) halloween costumes galore.” 


Adorable Asian Babies Who Dress Better Than You
 (click here to see them all)

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“Here are kids who make the playground their runway and lower our self-esteem by dressing way better than we ever did during our toddler years.” 

 


AND NOW IT’S YOUR TURN!


Our readers made it clear to us that there are plenty of children who deserve to be on this list. We want to know! If you’d like to submit a child to be featured on our next ADORABLE ASIAN BABY story, please let us know.

If you’d like a chance for your Adorable Asian Baby to be featured in our next story, send the child’s photo to ethel@audreymagazine.com 

Along with:
1) The child’s name and age.
2) This mini Audrey questionnaire with your baby’s answers (or answers he/she would give if he/she could talk). Be creative with your responses!

  • Favorite Asian food:
  • Favorite Asian actress/actor:
  • My fashion advice for Asian babies:
  • My favorite way to wake my parents up:
  • What I want to be when I grow up:

 

We will let you know if your baby has been chosen. Goodluck!

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Video of The Week: The Fastest (And Cutest) Baby Penguin is in Love

Valentine’s Day is around the corner and love is in the air. That certainly appears to be the case for this female cape penguin who lives at Matsue Vogel Park in Japan.

Matsue Vogel Park is one of the Largest indoor garden in the world and is situated in Matsue-shi, Shimane prefecture. It is an aviary park which houses a number of tropical birds such as toucans, turacos, hornbills and ibises. There are also a number of aquatic birds such as emus and, you guessed it, penguins.

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This particular penguin is named Sakura-Chan and from the looks of it, she seems absolutely smitten by the human caretaker. At least it seems that way since she won’t allow any distance between the two.

No matter how fast the caretaker runs, Sakura-Chan is right on his heels. Forget having a human Valentine this year. This quick and adorable penguin is sure to warm your heart.

Watch the video below.

 

Looking For Something To Do On Valentine’s Day? Try Beating The World’s Longest Kiss

I know some of you are tired of the usual Valentine’s day lineup. Dress up, have a fancy dinner and exchange a heart-shaped box of chocolate. Boring right?

Well if your Valentine is up for a challenge this year, why not have a playful holiday? While you’re at, why not try to beat the Guinness World Record for the longest kiss ever?

Of course, this will be no easy feat. The world’s longest kiss lasted a whomping 58 hours, 35 minutes and 58 seconds.

The record was set by Ekkachai Tiranarat and Laksana Tiranarat during an event organized by Ripley’s Believe It Or Not in Thailand. The annual kissathon competition happens during, you guessed it, Valentine’s Day. This particular record was set on February 12-14 last year.


The event began with nine couples who were not allowed to sit, rest or sleep. In fact, when the contestants had to eat, drink, or use the restroom, they needed to get creative. The couples were not allowed to break away from the kiss for anything.

Ekkachai Tiranarat and Laksana Tiranarat received a $3,300 cash prize, two diamond rings and the Guinness World record for their kiss. Funny enough, they had set the record back in 2011. They may very well try to beat their record once more.

You and your date could try your hand at beating the record. If not, you just have an excuse to kiss for as long as you want.

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