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Fuzhou Hairstyle

In Fuzhou, situated in South China, in the early times, yimei and yisao (married woman and married womanun) could be differentiated from their distinctive hairstyles. During the period after the Qing Dynasty and at the beginning of the Republic of China, unmarried women wore their hair in a plait while married women in a bun. It was a generally accepted custom, and no one goes against it. Those with a plait were called "yimei" sweetly while those with a bun were respectfully called  "yisao". Thus the borderline was definite: you can certainly make a judge at first sight, without a mistake.

The hairstyle of married women changed gradually from the bun to the modish perm by the 1920's and 1930's. On the day before her wedding ceremony, the girl would go to the barber's to have her hair permed, and her lady friend or relative would keep her company. After the perming, when walked out of the barber, back to the street, everyone (whether acquaintances or strangers) could aware that she would become a bride soon. And then the boundary between yimei and yisao was still clear, therefore, you would notbe regarded as impolite if you call a lady according to her hairstyle.

However, sometimes later, some unmarried teenage girls also had their hair permed, and some yisao who had already gave birth to children still plaited their hair, making it hard to tell a yimei from a yisao only from their hairstyle.