Army Of Clones — Facing The New Beauty Industry
Who has the pretty face, the right body and what it should look like? It seems it’s a question that keeps coming around, and around. Something that as women, seems inescapable: how we often find ourselves comparing what nature gave us, to a certain standard, which we like to blame on the big bad Media.
I’ve been around for a few decades and I’ve seen many articles about the outrage of skinny bodies, young faces, and young models used by the fashion and beauty industry. I’ve heard many times, feminists and women, questioning what magazines, TV shows, and movies do to us, and to our children and the argument is always the same: why does it seem that they all look alike?
Since the advent of Social Media we’ve breathed a sigh of relief. Plus size models have found their way to the covers of swimsuit issues, and thanks to Instagram, we can all find our idea of beauty to be growing exponentially.
We can create a community of women and we can finally find images that reflect our own kid of beauty, so we can finally feel good about being ourselves, right?
Yes, the Kim K and plus size revolution that appeared, thanks to social media, has changed many beauty standards. But when I look at pictures of Kim K, I rarely see beauty that isn’t drawn on, contoured on, or painted on. Kim, is in fact a work of art, airbrushed to Photoshop perfection — and because she’s just a regular gal, well it’s ok for her to get as much help as she can, right? She’s playing by the rules of the magazines and the industry that’s already in place. So what’s wrong with that…
Her type of painted on beauty has unleashed on social media, a bevvy of followers, and imitators, hoping to grasp fame (and a lot of likes) by appropriating her looks. It seems an easy task, because she’s the girl next door, she’s just like all of us?
And the logic goes… that if we put on her eyebrows, her cheek bones and her lips, and her smoky eyes, we too can hold her power… Instagram power, or just her sex appeal power. Because she is a self-made beauty, it’s ok to conform, to emulate so we can ourselves, grab the followers, be cool, be insiders.
Well that is where all this logic goes bad. Because in fact, we’re creating an army of clones, of women formatting their beauty to gain approval and power based on what another woman has achieved.
We used to blame magazines, and fashion taste-makers for the cookie cutter beauty we were seeing. But with Social Media, we can’t blame anyone but ourselves at making beauty still as narrow, maybe different from the blonde bombshell, but still, quite narrow, young and buxom (of the lip and bosom).
And from the faces of the young women working at Sephora, to the sea of beauty instagrammers, the definition of beauty that we are creating, as consumers, and as followers, is based on lots of makeup and not the actual idea of true variety and uniqueness. All the faces from the above collage are from the Anastasia Beverly Hills Instagram account.
Now the question is, why are we creating for ourselves this, photoshopped, over done beauty, and calling it beauty? When in fact it’s as normative as any magazine, Tv show, or movie of the past?