the new bluish-white headlights of which you refer are known as high intensity discharge (aka HID) lights. they are similar in design to mercury
vapor lights (bluish streetlights), high pressure sodium
lights (orangy-yellowish streetlights) and metal halide lamps (similar to mercury vapor, but more versatile). they're efficent, they last forever
and are durable as hell. they used to be used only in industrial applications, but new designs have allowed them to be put into cars for our collective annoyance.
i find myself staring at these types of headlights because they're really pretty, much in the same way i can't help but stare at the beautiful blue light of arc or tig welding. i'm not usually attracted to shiny objects, but these just seem to hyptonize me every time.