Most college students learn about the golden ratio, a mathematical proportion considered aesthetically pleasing by designers, artists and architects. But one Chinese beauty contest has caused outrage for dictating that its college student contestants have specific body proportions, down to the placement of their nipples.
The contest, held by the website Campus Model, is searching for the "ten most beautiful college students" in Hubei Province, according to Gawker. Its rules outline stringent requirements for applicants, including standards for hips, waist and bust measurements. It even states the desired distance between a contestant's pupils.
Derided by critics as "humiliating, disrespectful and ridiculous," the contest's most controversial requirement is that applicants prove that their nipples are no more than 20 centimeters apart, according to Global Times. The prize for winning is about $1,600.
A spokesman for Campus Model told the Times that the measurement criteria were based on "traditional Chinese and more modern Western aesthetic values," and were necessary because the organizers wanted the winners to be "extremely good-looking."
In contrast, pageants in the United States, such as Miss America, have moved away from being strictly about physical beauty. The swimsuit and evening wear aspects of the Miss America pageant now only count for 35 percent of a contestant's score, with more combined weight being given to talent, personal interviews and a candidate's response to an onstage question.
Additionally, Miss America hasn't published its contestants' bust, hip and waist measurements since 1985.