Japan Turns to Costly Snaggletooth Craze (VIDEO)

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By Esther Tanquintic-Misa | February 8, 2013 3:00 PM EST

Snaggletooth, which is similar to having imperfect whites due to some protruding ones is the new craze in Japan.

Japanese women are now spending about $400 just to make their perfect teeth look imperfect. Whereas women in other parts of the globe spend a fortune to have perfectly aligned pearly white smiles, these Japanese females are the doing the exact opposite due to a fashion craze, dubbed the snaggletooth craze, currently hitting their shores.

And what more to validate the craze than with an all-girl band named after it. TYB48 or "Tseuke-Yaeba 48" whose debut album titled "Mind If I Bite?" came out April 2011. Tseuke-yaeba means snaggletooth in Japan.

But purposely mangling one's set of teeth, specially when one already has the fortunate set of perfect teeth, can later on serve more injury than the temporary beauty.

Yes, they may look cute but Dr. Joseph Banker, a cosmetic dentist, told Yahoo Shine that purposely tinkering with front canines can lead to jaw problems, tooth decay and bacteria build-up.

"Although the procedure may seem non-invasive, the underlying teeth can be damaged in several ways. The additional length may cause stress on the teeth and can increase the risk of a tooth fracture," he said.

The snaggletooth look gives a Japanese woman that "impish kind of beauty which men find endearingly attractive," according to Taro Masuoka, the very same dentist who pioneered the procedure and is the creator of TYB48 or "Tseuke-Yaeba 48."

"A lot of my patients are fashion-conscious and very cute. I wanted to find some way to take advantage of this, so I formed TYB48," Masuoka told Japan Today. 

However, their Western counterparts believe the trend will just stay where it is, only in Japan.

"Americans have spent billions of dollars educating ourselves on the effects of good oral hygiene . . . We care about the way our teeth look but we care more about if they are healthy," Dr Jacqueline Fulop Goodling told Yahoo Shine.

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