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Japanese Snaggletooth Trend: Yaeba

Fanglike Teeth: Japan's Wildly Popular Beauty Craze

While the trend of attaining 100 percent perfect teeth has perhaps waned a bit in the US, in Japan, some are choosing a more fanglike look. Dubbed "yaeba" in Japanese (or the American equivalent snaggleteeth), the style has young women heading to the dentist for crooked smiles, courtesy of plastic pieces affixed to the teeth. But why?

"The gapped tooth is sort of preorthodontic or early development, and the naturally occurring yaeba is because of delayed baby teeth or a mouth that's too small," Pace University's Dr. Emilie Zaslow told The New York Times, adding, "It's this kind of emphasis on youth and the sexualization of young girls."

We've seen stars embrace their perfectly imperfect natural choppers, such as Kirsten Dunst, who admitted to Elle UK, "I love my snaggle fangs. . . . they give me character and character is sexy." And then there is Heidi Klum, who explained that one of the reasons she liked the ad for her fragrance, Shine, is that "my snaggletooth is coming out a little bit." And whether the yaeba trend remains popular or not — despite its creepy implications — there's always another fangy fad: tooth tattooing.

Image Source: Thinkstock
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