The makeup and beauty industries have had long-standing marketing strategies targeting mostly women. In doing so, they have established strong gender norms that haven’t served us, meaning - ALL OF US. What happens when men or gender-nonconforming individuals wear makeup in communities? Depending on where they live, they may face significant backlash or even health and safety concerns. In order to prevent such risky situations, we have to continue to promote that people, besides women, can and should wear makeup. Because it’s true. Hey, if it makes you feel more empowered, more confident, more you, then there’s no reason society’s current (well, past i.e. older generation) norms should be adhered to. Remember, it was Egyptian men who first wore eye make-up all those millennia ago.
A year ago September, in 2018, the National Football League debuted two cheerleading teams with male teammates. Men are now cheering professionally for the NFL. Men are nurses. Men are parenting independently. Men are holding roles historically given to women. And women are Chief Executive Officers and the breadwinners for families. Roles can no longer be assigned to one sex or gender identity. And makeup shouldn’t either.
Younger generations are largely pushing back against these strong stereotypes. If other people didn’t want to wear makeup, there wouldn’t be this pushback. This leads us to the obvious conclusion that makeup isn’t just for women. I’m guessing you already knew that though.
Men and other non-conforming individuals should feel just as beautiful as women do when they put makeup on. If they have a blemish they feel the desire to creatively cover, they should do so without judgement or risk. What is so amazing about wearing makeup is the ability to root oneself in a new identity for the day or night. Most women know the feeling of wanting to go out on a Friday night and feel exciting. To accomplish this they may reach for a specific product or look. Men have similar needs.
What has been helpful for men and other people to access makeup products has been the vast e-commerce market. Makeup can be easily purchased and shipped from the internet without fear of having to be seen at a specific makeup counter in the community. YouTube has invited makeup artists and stylists into our homes to teach us how to use products and accomplish looks. Social media has allowed us to market ourselves online and highlight that there is a need and a community where makeup isn’t just for women. James Charles became famous because of viral yearbook photo with stunning lashes and the perfect nude lip. He then went on to be the first male face for Covergirl. He, and many other young people, are paving the way for the future of the beauty industry.
What comes next has yet to be seen for beauty, but we feel strongly that there’s a place for men, transgender, and non-conforming individuals in it. Accessing makeup and feeling beautiful, confident and empowered is universal. And that’s what we stand for…and that’s what we all should be fighting for.
What about you? Leave us your opinion in the Comments field below!
Comments will be approved before showing up.