Normalization Trends (Part 2): Real Women’s Bodies & Size Inclusiveness, Influencer Retouchcore, Men’s Taboo Trends and Teen Boy Perms (ft. Good American, SKIMS, Universal Standard, Girlfriend Collectvive, CUUP, The Faculty, and Hims)
Sept 21st , 2020
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Welcome back for part 2 of our mini series on Normalization! Please make sure to check out the last episode for a more robust explanation, history and discussion.
Amanda really dives in here to a rather contentions subject matter - Normalizing Women’s bodies. She starts with a thought piece on some of the most obvious culprits toward a negative movement and also extreme positivity - Influencers!
With the growth of accessible apps, photoshop and other tech - Influencers are deluding their followers and retouching themselves to laughably unreachable sizes (i.e. a 6/8 to a 0/2) in every single photo they post. Some apps that stretch the body give the appearance of heroine chic but the consequence are misshapen coneheads and massive feet.
BUT there is a growing trend in body positive influencers as well as brands that are actually fashionable.
Case in point the Kardashians support of a body positive fashion accessibility like Good American>> that is sexy and trendy if not a slight lean into fast fashion. But a better offering that most plus size brands. Also check up on Skims>>- a Kim Kardashian vehicle for intimates, basics and loungewear. Skims>> is known for not only size inclusivity (up to size 4X) but also nudes in a wide variety of skin tones.
Universal Standard>> is a real groundbreaker because the make everything in their line from a size 00-40.
GIrlfriend Collective>> is an activewear brand doing their part to normalize women’s size inclusivity. It’s hard to find cute activewear for larger sizes...basically the activewear industry has been ignoring anyone over a size XL. Girlfriend offers everything up to size 6XL and they use recycled plastic for a lot of the garments (so extra brownie points).
CUUP>> is a great intimate brand (Kim wears them and highly recommends! ︎︎︎︎︎ ) - offering a generous size range and includes models of all shapes and sizes in their campaigns.
Kim tackles the trending normalization of various men’s taboo issues that can be considered negatively “emasculating” like certain health issues as well as elements of “grooming”.
Teen boy perms are HOT HOT HOT>> - check out your local Tick Tock looks for more Timothee Chalamet impersonators (or this Cut Article>>).
As the notions of gender fluidity and disregard of gender norms is starting to take root and spread the tastemakers and early adopters have found nailpoish and other traditionally female grooming tricks normalized as a new wave of men’s masculinity --->incoming brand The Faculty>> is sliding in to elevate the experience and build a lifestyle around it featuring Drop culture in men’s products like a pine colored nail polish.
There has been a growing interest in the long tabooed conversion around men’s makeup. And both luxury brands (i.e. Chanel, Marc Jacobs, Tom Ford) as well as indie brands have been seeing success with their men’s makeup collections as the trend to normalize this market has been increasing. Tho subtlety is key - especially among many hetrosexual men where maintaining masculinity is of societal importance. Mmuk>> (a british men’s makeup brand) has beard products for men who experience beard thinning - like mascara and fillers, even a shadow palette - for that fuller look, “guyliners” and “manscaras”and man lipstick. Fluide, Mac & Milk also stand out as gender blurers.
Finally - With the shifting telehealth laws and an increasing number of brand-name medications going off-patent a few DTC brands have been able to offer self care and prescription product at a fraction of the cost from previous methods and right from the privacy of your home. Hims>> in particular is working to normalize masculine self care and offer comfortable, affordable support and solutions for typically “emasculating” medical and cosmetic issues that are hard to talk about can create self esteem issues - hair loss, erectile dysfunction, mental health and adult acne.