Why South Korean Women Are Destroying Makeup And Chopping Off Their Hair
South Korea women are championing the 'escape the corset' movement
As K-beauty fever continues to grip the rest of the world, looks like it is losing steam where it actually originated. In fact, losing steam would be an understatement given how South Korean women are protesting against its unrealistic and unattainable standards.
South Korean women are reportedly destroying all their makeup products and chopping off their mane as part of the 'escape the corset' movement. This protest is their fight against unrealistic and stringent beauty standards in the country.
The movement has allegedly gained major traction on social media. Women have posted images of smashed makeup products and even videos of themselves destroying their collection.
South Korean Women Are Destroying Their Makeup To Break Free
The idea behind the name is simple. Makeup, just like corsets restraints women and places them in boxes. The movement has especially been crucial to the predominantly patriarchal South Korea, because of one reason. Flawless beauty is considered important for success in career and relationships.
This stringent ask often forces women to wake up two hours earlier than their normal time so they can carry out the 10-step skincare regimen. The country with its massive skincare industry (S$17.91billion reported in 2017), is one of the pioneers of the now-famous Korean beauty routine.
In fact, plastic surgery is also quite popular in the nation. The Independent reports that, "Seoul is the global plastic surgery capital and the wealthy neighbourhood of Gangnam reportedly has 500 aesthetic centres."
But now woke women are boycotting these unrealistic beauty standards and raising their voices against it.
South Korean Women Are Using Social Media To Rally Together
Beauty vlogger Lina Bea for instance, released a video titled "I am not pretty" that has already amassed over 5,489,406 views. In the video, she is first seen applying makeup and putting on lashes. Then, some harsh comments appear on screen. Noticeably, “Your bare face is a terror to my eyes, lol” and, “Your skin isn’t good for women.”
Bae then moves on to removing her makeup and signs off by saying: “I am not pretty, but it is fine. You’re special the way you are.”
The platform of YouTube is not exclusive to this movement. Instagrammers are also using their influence to spread their message of solidarity towards this movement. Many women posted images of themselves smashing their makeup products.
Incidentally, a South Korean television presenter came under fire when she became the first presenter to come on air wearing glasses. So you can imagine the crazy beauty standards South Korea is obsessed with.
Is K-Beauty Routine Too Unrealistic?
This movement, while still in its nascent stage, has certainly gained momentum and managed to rally together several South Korean women. They are pointing at the unrealistic looks that includes flawless and poreless skin, rosy cheeks and delicate soft pink lips.
Interestingly, South Korean women have found support outside their patriarchal. Young girls and busy working gals are speaking up in favour of 'escape the corset.'
"I think a 10-step skincare routine is a bit much to keep up with. Sure, I like to take care of myself, want to look good and age gracefully, but we need to be realistic as well. A simple three-step routine should suffice, if not it just becomes a cumbersome chore," Dew M. Chaiyanara, Singapore-based artistic director and theatre practitioner tells HerStyleAsia.
Chaiyanara adds that unrealistic made up looks shouldn't be considered an ideal for impressionable young girls.
"Also, try not to think of makeup as a mask to hide your flaws -- it is ammunition to help put your best face forward so you are ready to take on the world. But most importantly, do this for yourself. Not for others," she further added.