Cool Girl, Where Art Thou?

There’s a lot of buzz around the ‘cool girl’ beauty movement – rumours and legends spread like wildfire about what ‘cool girl’ does and what ‘cool girl’ likes. But who the hell is she anyway?!

Googling the term ‘cool girl beauty’ leads me to headlines like “What’s the deal with cool girl beauty?” (That’s what I wanna know!) along with “5 Cool-Girl Beauty Trends for Spring Brides”, “Top 5 Picks from this Cool-Girl Beauty Brand” “7 Cool-Girl Beauty Brands to Check out if you Love Glossier” and “How Glossier harnessed the Myth of Cool Girl Makeup”. Glossier seems to be reigning supreme in the category, with Milk as a close runner-up. (imo, Milk tries a little too hard. Some of their products seem so impractical! Cool Girl doesn’t want that!)

So, who is this Cool Girl everyone keeps talking about?

I think the first thing to learn is that Cool Girl isn’t the same for men as it is for women. We all remember (and lived for) the Cool Girl monologue in Gone Girl, but the girl we’re looking for isn’t her. It’s not about burgers or blowjobs (thank god…) but about being low-maintenance and laid back. But in a chic way.

Cool Girl is effortless, a chilled-out big sister type who only uses two skincare products, probably from a French pharmacy brand. She’s tall, could probably get away with washing her face with bar soap without ill effects, and has plenty of money to spend but nobody knows what she actually does for a living. Maybe she’s a little androgynous-looking, she might be a model or blogger. She wears calvins, levis and crisp cotton shirts. She applies her makeup in the back of a taxi or in the elevator, using as few products as possible. Cool girl doesn’t bake or contour or wing her eyeliner. She doesn’t own brushes, just smudges her makeup on with a pinky finger.

Basically, she’s perfect without even trying.

Basically, she’s a complete fairy tale.

Maybe you think you know of a cool girl – what about Alexa Chung! Or that french model! No. They’re not cool girl. They’re real people. Cool Girl was invented in a meeting room by a bunch of marketing executives, probably. Let me assure you – no fictional lady is ever as amazing or complex as women are in real life. And that’s fine. That’s interesting. And most of all, real.

4 thoughts on “Cool Girl, Where Art Thou?

  1. Laura

    I actually thought this would be about Gone Girl. This made me wonder though, do you feel like men’s and women’s versions of “cool girl” overlap and in what ways? Funny and yet terrifying to see how the same marketing tropes evolve through the history.


    1. Saffron

      Definitely the whole laid-back-ness and not making a visible effort despite being magically perfect! I just think women and men’s ideas of what’s perfect are different… I guess sexualization is the big difference.


  2. Hanna Triin

    This writing – a fucking home-run!! YESSSS.


    1. Saffron

      Aww thank you!! <3


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