In spite of the recent massive backlash against trans TikToker Dylan Mulvaney, whose partnership with Bud Light tanked the brand, Maybelline has decided to advertise their make-up products with bearded men applying lip gloss on TikTok.
The bald man sporting a rhinestone barrette in his thick beard applies the lip gloss, talks about it's staying power, and encourages people to go buy Maybelline on Amazon.
Maybelline was listed as a Gen Z top beauty brand by Glossy in both 2019 and 2021. At the time, they said that Maybelline was seeing success on TikTok, which is of course where they found Ryan Vita, his beard, his lips, and his rhinestone barrette.
It's likely that Maybelline was ready for the backlash, since they already saw a wave of it when they partnered with Dylan Mulvaney, who made his career off of posting TikTok videos documenting his gender transition from gay man to "girl." Based on that, it's impossible to conclude that Maybelline was doing anything here other than asking for more backlash. Maybe they making women angry on the internet is good for their brand?
There has been a recent wave of women's products being advertised by femme-presenting men, some of whom attempt to pass, like Dylan Mulvaney, and others who are unmistakably men in full makeup, like Ryan Vita, a TikToker who lists himself as a "beauty guru." His TikTok page is full of makeup tutorials and videos of him shopping for beauty supplies as a Maybelline partner.
The backlash from women seeing men advertise products intended for them has been fierce. As men walk the catwalk with collagen-filled lips and butt implants, sporting one-piece swimsuits that show off all their male assets while not at all showing how the suits would look on women, women who buy things have been nothing short of appalled.
The purpose of putting clothing on models is to show potential customers how the garments would look on them, but putting women's clothing on male bodies, whether it be swim suits, lingerie, dresses, blouses, or even big man-sized women's shoes, does nothing of the sort. It is a wonder why companies that make their money by selling women's products to women are working so hard to show women how great those products look on men.
Anthropologie, Lush, Kate Spade, Nike, Adidas are just a few of the countless other brands hellbent on replacing women in their marketing campaigns with men and then still asking women to buy their products. To be honest, it makes it hard to find anything to want when looking out at a landscape of beauty and apparel products and not finding women represented among them.
The progressive, activist left is fond of saying that "representation matters," and after the past year of seeing women disappear from view even in the marketing of women's products, I can attest that yes, this is true. With women out of the picture, there is no way for women to tell if the products being pimped by bearded men, or men in general, have any place on a woman's body.
If a lip gloss, dress, handbag, or anything else is advertised to women on male bodies, there's no reason at all for women to buy it. Those companies have indicated exactly who they want buying their products, and it's certainly not women.
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