Bagel Heads: Top Or Flop?

Do you love bagels, Dotters? I hope so; because that’s one thing you’ll have in common with the main characters of this post. In fact, their degree of affection for rolls is way higher than normal: they can’t get them out of their heads…bagelhead

“Bagel head’ is a body modification technique which originated in Toronto, more than a decade ago (1999) ,and was subsequently brought to Japan in 2003 by photographer Ryoichi “Keroppy” Maeda, who’s been hosting “bagel head parties” since 2007. The two-hour “bagel baking” process consists of a 400 milliliters saline injection into the subject’s forehead. This creates a round swelling which is pushed in with a thumb to create the shape. Within 24 hours the skin returns to normal as the saline is absorbed by the body.bagelheads

National Geographic’s show “Taboo” dedicated one episode to that phenomenon and followed the transformation of 3 bagel heads living in Tokyo. One of the participants ,John, used expressions such as “tingling sensation” and “swimming with the dolphins” to  describe his experience. This really brings new meaning to the saying “No pain, no gain” because ooh does it look painful!  Opinions about the precariousness of the operation or the adverse effects of the saline on skin’s elasticity vary but it remains clear that only a professional can get you through the whole procedure safely. bage

In an interview with VICE, Keroppy explains that the rise of the bagel heads trend is linked to the fact that people “want to find their own way of doing things”. In other words, some folks want to feel so unique, and their look to be so remarkable, that they would willingly walk around with lumps on their foreheads! I came across an article where bagel heads were labeled “live art” and I’m curious to know your opinion on this topic, Dotters. Although the modification is not permanent, I personally think the result is appalling. Some trends just don’t deserve the frenzy created around them, and according to me, this is one of them.

Images: Jamie Clifton on &


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