Who decides who gets to wear makeup? We talk so much about double standards between genders, and how they disproportionately affect women. And while women still (unfortunately) have a ways to go, recognizing when guys get the short end of the stick is important when it comes to reaching gender equality all around. So that makes us wonder—why does the beauty industry only seem to target women, from their product packaging to their advertisements? Women wear makeup for a variety of reasons, whether it's to help enhance their natural beauty or to help them feel more confident. Shouldn't men have the option to do the same?
Phillip Picardi of Refinery29 had the same questions. So when he wanted to showcase the season's best new lip colors, he photographed the looks on series of men, complete with scruffy beards, scraggly hair and lumberjack flannels. And they look FAB. Each picture is accompanied by a Q&A with the model talking about themselves and why they chose the color they chose.
When asked how wearing lipstick felt, how they first reacted to their photos and about a time they felt beautiful, the men responded with pretty memorable answers, many of which made us feel all the feels: Kevin, a professional model, said that he was "surprised how beautiful [he] thought the lipstick looked." Adam, a hairstylist, said that seeing his photo felt "exhilarating." Visual merchandiser Ryan mentioned that the last time he felt particularly beautiful was when he was "in love."
The truth is, the article does much more than give 15 men the perfect pout. It makes a statement about embracing who you really are and living life the way you want to. Regardless of gender, if wearing makeup brings you joy, then head to the makeup counter, grab your favorite shade and apply all you want. Makeup should no longer be exclusively for any single gender. In today's world, men and women are both encouraged to be their true selves. And if your true self wants glossy red lips, then apply without shame!