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China selfie-app leader Meitu gaining traction abroad

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"It's the same as with clothing and make-up. They are all ways for people to better present themselves," said Ms Hu (left), who likens Meitu to a cheap, non-permanent form of cosmetic surgery. She added: "Everyone uses it as a kind of personal advertisement."

Shanghai

STROLLING a tree-lined Shanghai street with friends, Hu Dongyuan pulls out her smartphone and does what millions of Chinese women do daily: take a selfie, digitally "beautify" their faces, and pop it on social media.

Such virtual makeovers, typically involving lightening

sentifi.com

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