A Beautiful Matrix: Beauty, Social Media, and the Hyperreal

As the term “snapchat dysmorphia” enters our collective vocabulary, I think it’s time we talked about the way we look and the way we pretend to look on social media. Perfection hasn’t gone out of style, it’s become the bare minimum. As reports of patients asking for cosmetic procedures to make them look like retouched selfies (their own or celebrities’) accumulate, it seems that the digital images we create and...

Looking for Pride in the Skincare Aisle: Being a LGBT Beauty Consumer

I’ve been wanting to write about this for such a long time, but I find myself unable to organize my thoughts. It’s like I can’t combine my experiences as an LGBT person with beauty – which I think might be what the problem is all about. Whenever I talk about LGBT issues it tends to be broader, more political and more than anything, impersonal. I don’t talk about my own...

The Haul: A Guilty Pleasure

I recently asked my instagram followers about what they thought of hauls (side note : I realize I have a tendency to ask other people’s opinions before expressing my own. I don’t know if this makes me wishy-washy or if it means I don’t want to try to sway anyone else before they answer. I’m bringing this up with my therapist.) and noticed a rather interesting divide – a lot...

Is it a con?

By now we’ve all read that piece on “the skincare con” on The Outline. Thankfully, Racked has focused on debunking many of the false claims of the piece , like the idea that evolution has fine-tuned our bodies to perfection and thus we don’t need skincare. And I can agree – we don’t need skincare, but that doesn’t mean we can’t prefer it. As Racked pointed out, there’s plenty of scientific...

Brands Gone Wild – When Beauty Brands Misbehave, How Do We Respond?

*header image – Truth Coming Out of Her Well to Shame Mankind by Jean-Léon Gérôme. There’s no shortage of drama in the beauty community. This we know to be true. However, most of the mess that garners attention is beef between vloggers or instagram models leaving their sponsorships undisclosed. What I see a lot of personally, though, is misbehaviour on the other end – the corporate end. Beauty brands stick...

Makeup for girl-women.

Ok y’all, it’s that time again. I’m getting on the soapbox, yelling indignantly et cetera. But can we talk about how so much of beauty has this unpleasantly infantilizing tone? Looking at a lot of beauty ads, there are strange references to girlhood and childishness. The unicorn trend is, I’d say, the most obvious illustration of this – unicorns may just be the ultimate symbol of female virginity, innocence, purity...

The beautiful world of empowertising

When’s the last time you heard the term “empowering” in a context that wasn’t completely ridiculous? Empowerment has gone from being a feminist concern to an advertising buzzword used to sell anything and everything to women. I’ve seen sexy lingerie, menstrual products, snacks and pussy highlighter all being sold as “empowering”. Clearly, this word means nothing of value anymore – it’s window dressing for a “woke” female consumer. You can...

Men, beauty & homophobia

There’s a disturbing but unsurprising tendency among men – primarily straight, cisgender men – of extreme reactions to other men’s style choices. This is especially prevalent when men in one way or another uses feminine attributes in their self expression. I read an article in a major Swedish newspaper where a man was making a big deal about men who wear perfume, going so far as to compare their wearing...

Makeup is not a weapon.

In an interview with Hollywood Reporter, Peter Phillips – creative director of Dior beauty – makes the bold claim that makeup is a feminist weapon: “To Philips, it’s not something to hide behind, but a tool that enhances women’s feminine power. “A lipstick, an eyeliner is something a woman can use, and should use, to really put forward her strengths,” continues Philips. “She can totally control how she wants the...

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...