EXO Kai and ‘Kai Glow’ — What It Truly Represents

EXO’s Kai being Bobbi Brown’s first muse is more than being associated with the makeup brand. It is a statement — embracing your skin’s natural beauty.

Kai, South Korean boy group member of EXO, was announced to be Bobbi’s Brown first muse in October 2020. Upon finding the news, fans were thrilled at the fact Kai was chosen and described as Bobbi Brown’s first muse. Fans were able to trend Kai and hashtags like #KAIxBobbiBrown when finding out the news. It was viewed as another achievement, another earned title, “First Male Muse” — another first. However, it was beyond the fact that Kai obtained another “first”, following other titles like “Asia’s First Love”, “Gucci’s First South Korean Global Ambassador”. That was impressive, but it meant even more. This was about what Bobbi Brown represented: embracing your natural skin.

It is known that makeup brands fail to expand their shade ranges. Fortunately some makeup brands are expanding their shade ranges, but not enough of them. To be quite honest, the exclusion of shade ranges, particularly darker shades, is embedded colorism. This is why we will always see way more shades of fairer complexions compared to darker ones. South Korea is a prime example of this.

As Korean skincare and makeup have been more popular for how well they feel and are to the face, their makeup never does as well as their skin care, internationally, due to lack of shade ranges. They market their products to countries of those with darker complexions yet fail to have shades that would suit those in that demographic. Many times, even South Koreans living in South Korea have a hard time finding their right shade. Kai is one of those Koreans.

Kai, as many know, is the EXO member with the darkest complexion. Kai has been subjected to colorism all his life. The most disgusting things have been said to him about his skin, even though his skin is very beautiful. Kai does not have fair skin, like many Koreans, and others around the world. Kai, previously, wore shades lighter during his career, not because he wanted to but that was what he had to work with.

South Korea, and many parts of the world, glorifies fairer or lighter skin. This is evident across many countries. Colorism is global. This is why when he became Bobbi Brown’s first muse, that meant something to everyone. This is beyond the association of Bobbi Brown. It is about embracing your natural skin tone and its beauty.

Kai has a beautiful skin tone. Time and time again, we do not get to see it due to whitewashed videos and photographs in addition to not having the right shade. When 1st Look magazine released their photoshoot of ‘Kai Glow’, many fans rejoiced at the sight. Kai’s skin was shown for its beauty. His golden complexion for what it is, beautiful.

Describing Kai’s skin is almost impossible. There will never be the right diction to describe it. His skin is so beautiful that you begin to compare it to beautiful things, and you eventually get lost in your own words. Many fans loved seeing Kai embracing his natural skin tone, because they knew how he was treated for his skin, what this meant to him, and what Kai Glow personally meant to them.

It is quite disgusting for people to consistently whitewash him or not match his shade as if his complexion isn’t one of the things that formed his identity. Kai’s skin is what shaped his experiences in South Korea.

“Kai Glow” is beyond the makeup brand. It is a statement. His skin is beautiful. Darker skin tones are beautiful and worthy of products that suit well with it.

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