Regarding the July 16 article “Miss Universe lesson: Japanese women find beauty inside and out”: As the world becomes globalized, the concept of beauty is also globalizing. In 2003 Miyako Miyazaki won fifth place in the Miss Universe competition. In 2006 Kurara Chibana was first runnerup, and following her, Riyo Mori was crowned Miss Universe in 2007.

This tells me that Japanese beauty is becoming recognized worldwide. And this is a good thing. With the many opportunities to see Western culture, the people and their fashions, many Japanese girls have imitated Westerners by dying their hair blonde, wearing color contacts and so on — thus seeming to prove the foreign view of Japanese girls as hesitant to express their opinions and always doing everything as a group.

However, Japanese women have a kind of special brilliance that Westerners do not have. They should be confident and express themselves as Japanese. Miyazaki, Chibana and Mori are representatives of confident and independent Japanese young ladies. They show that young women in Japan can step out onto the world stage and be successful.

Hiroko Mima, 21, the latest of these women, is a university student who took part in the Miss Universe contest in Vietnam on July 14. Although she will not be the next Miss Universe, I like her words of confidence in the beauty of Japanese women that she left us with.

sakumi shimose