From cutting their hair short and wearing glasses on TV to smashing their cosmetics, many South Korean women are rebelling against strict beauty standards. Online movement #escapethecorset is battling against the country’s traditional cultural ideals and highlighting other feminist issues.
South Korea’s market for children’s makeup is growing rapidly, in keeping with a societal focus on the beauty and cosmetics industries. As makeup is normalised among new demographics, beauty norms are becoming increasingly difficult to navigate, espcially for children.
Hashtag crazes like #A4Challenge and #BellyButtonChallenge reveal the huge social pressure Chinese women are under to conform to narrow beauty ideals. With a variety of eating disorders on the rise, some brands are now helping young people reject old conventions and pursue self-acceptance.
Gentle Monster is an “experimental-art-meets-Korean-eyewear” brand making a big name in China’s luxury market. It is attracting customer dollars (renminbi) with celebrity backers, statement-making styles and a retail experience – known as ‘retailtainment’ – while appealing to Chinese eye health concerns.
Jade rollers have gained a cult following in the US due to celebrities and online influencers championing the ancient Chinese skincare tool. Jade Roller Beauty is just one of the brands tapping into this resurgent popularity, encouraging facial exercise to naturally enhance one’s complexion.