South Korean Women Smash Makeup, and Patriarchy

gender letter: South Korean Women Smash Makeup, and Patriarchy




“Born pretty? That’s an infinite fat lie.”
— A make-up business inside the Seoul subway
The movement began quietly, with girls posting images on social media of smashed make-up palettes — vibrant messes of shimmering powder and crushed lipstick that appeared almost like pretty inventive endeavors.
Nonetheless this wasn’t paintings — this was protest, one whereby South Korean girls, emboldened by #MeToo, had been protesting what they see as a result of the restrictive magnificence necessities of their nation’s deeply patriarchal custom. South Korea has the world’s highest cost of magnificence surgical process per capita, and the surprise market there generated $13 billion in product sales ultimate 12 months.
“We endure 12 steps merely to positioned on the basic merchandise sooner than we even apply make-up,” said Kim Ji-yeon, 22. “That principally defines the problem.”

[Sign up here to get future installments of the Gender Letter delivered to your inbox!] My colleague not too way back delved into the movement that’s develop to be commonly known as “Escape the Corset.” It is set in the direction of a backdrop of political and monetary disparities. Of 34 worldwide areas inside the Group for Monetary Cooperation and Progress, South Korea’s wage gap is the widest. And women preserve merely 10 % of firm administration positions.

So what are girls who’re escaping the corset doing, exactly? Aside from trashing make-up, which is saving them tons of of a month, they’re embracing bowl haircuts and selecting eyeglasses in its place of contacts — a seemingly straightforward protest that, nonetheless, has made the women targets of verbal abuse and dying threats on-line.
[Read the full story: South Korea Loves Plastic Surgery and Makeup. Some Women Want to Change That.] Nearer to dwelling, a novel effort is underway to draw consideration to unrealistic physique expectations propagated by the celebrities who dominate social media.
Jameela Jamil, an actor on “Good Place,” is on a quest to upend Instagram’s #sponcon machine — #sponcon is temporary for “sponsored content material materials,” or posts that celebrities are paid to promote — that pays untold sums to those who peddle weight discount teas and shakes, considerably celebrities (see: Khloe Kardashian).
“When will these girls who’re lined in beauty surgical procedure stop telling their followers to drink a laxative to look like them?” Ms. Jamil wrote on Instagram this week.

Ms. Jamil, who started the #iweigh movement on Instagram — which objectives for instance that a person’s worth must be measured in accomplishments, not in kilos — said she cares lots partly on account of she nonetheless grapples with effectively being points from associated merchandise she used to buy and ingest.
“I was who starved herself for years, who spent all her money on these miracle cures and laxatives and concepts from celebrities on the best way to maintain a weight that was lower than what my physique wished it to be,” she tweeted. “I was sick.”
On Tuesday, Ms. Jamil mocked these celebrities in a video that’s been thought-about three million situations between Twitter and Instagram. In it, she’s sitting on the toilet, sobbing through smeared make-up whereas sipping a shake.
Readers: Which magnificence merchandise would you be glad to under no circumstances see as soon as extra? Let me know at dearmaya@nytimes.com.
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By the numbers
$4.5 billion
That’s the online worth of Denise Coates, the richest girl you’ve almost definitely under no circumstances heard of. Ms. Coates, the British founder and chief authorities officer of the online taking part in agency Wager365, is bigger than 10 situations richer than Queen Elizabeth II, in response to Bloomberg. She merely joined the ranks of the world’s 500 richest people for the first time. She’s the one girl among the many many 17 billionaires in Britain.
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Additional from The Cases

“If Bobbie talks, I’m accomplished.” A trove of textual content material messages particulars a plan by the earlier CBS mogul Les Moonves to silence an accuser. [The New York Times] What’s it regarding the phrase “partner”? “I don’t want to be launched the least bit, as one thing other than my title, I believed, nonetheless I did not say this out loud,” writes Marcia Walker, for our Rites of Passage essay assortment. [The New York Times] A world epidemic of “femicide.” Better than half of all female homicide victims ultimate 12 months had been killed by intimate companions or relations. [The New York Times] “We’re eager to die proper right here.” As battle takes a toll on 1000’s and 1000’s of women and girls in Yemen, gender-equality activists are pushing to be included in future peace negotiations. [The New York Times] “Help Wished — Female.” It has been 50 years since The New York Cases labeled job adverts went unisex. So the place are all the female C.E.O.s? [New York Times Opinion]

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From the archives: Remembering Harvey Milk

Forty years previously this week, in 1978, Harvey Milk, a gay rights chief and the first overtly gay elected official of a major American metropolis, San Francisco, was assassinated in his Metropolis Hall office. Merely moments earlier, San Francisco’s mayor, George Moscone, was shot to dying within the similar establishing.
Milk served solely 11 months, nonetheless his political legacy endures: Some not too way back well-known that it paved the easiest way for what Folks witnessed earlier this month, when higher than 150 L.G.B.T.Q. candidates obtained seats inside the midterm elections.
In 2016, the Navy launched it might title a ship for him. Milk had served from 1951 to 1955, when he was discharged for being gay. And in 2009, Milk was awarded a posthumous Presidential Medal of Freedom.
A 12 months sooner than his dying, Milk recorded a message for his supporters. He’d requested an excellent good friend to launch it if he had been assassinated.
“I cannot cease anybody from getting offended or mad or aggravated,” he said inside the message. “I can solely hope they are going to flip that anger and frustration and madness into one factor constructive, so that tons of will step forward, so that gay medical medical doctors come out, the gay authorized professionals, gay judges, gay bankers, gay architects.”
Gender Letter helps you keep up with the world, and the women shaping it. Inform me what you assume at dearmaya@nytimes.com.
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