Tag Archives: Allure

Allure Marks Shifting Beauty Standards; Declares The “All-American Beauty” Ideal Dead

by Latoya Peterson

In the March 2011 issue of Allure, the beauty bible chose to celebrate their 20th anniversary by looking at the changing ways in which we define beauty.

Two decades ago, Allure conducted a study with 1,000 men and women called “What Beauty Means to You.”  A clear picture of what was considered beautiful emerged – and her name is Christie Brinkley:

But the last 20 years have brought major changes to our nation – and no where is this more evident than our ideas of who is considered most beautiful.  The new celebrity “ideal” according to Allure is now Angelina Jolie:

But here’s what’s really interesting.  Allure also showed photos of non-celebrity models and asked respondents to rank the person who was most attractive.  The top winners? A Latina female and a South Asian male (identified as a person of Indian descent).

 

 

Major takeaways from the study:

  • 69 percent of all respondents believe there is no longer any such thing as the “all-American” look
  • 85 percent believe that increased diversity in this country has changed what people consider beautiful.
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Allure’s “Faces of the Future” Promotes Stereotypes About Mixed People

by Latoya Peterson

Alongside the tragic mulatto myth, the idea that being mixed is somehow “futuristic” or modern, and the idea that mixed people will be better, faster, and stronger (also called the “hybrid vigor” myth), one of the enduring features about discussions of mixed race individuals is that “hotness” always surfaces.

Allure serves up a double dose of stereotypes, weaving hotness and hybrid vigor into one creepy, objectifying article  called “Faces of the Future.”  In their November 2009 issue, writer Rebecca Mead fawns over biracial superbabies and more specifically, the wonderful aesthetic of mixed race people. After starting off with statistics about the 6.8 million Americans who self-identified as mixed on the last census, the article launches right into dehumanization:

Take, for example, Alicia Thacker, a 27-year-old public-school teacher whom Marilyn Minter has been photographing for nearly a decade, ever since Thacker completed a painting class that Minter was teaching in New York City. Thacker, who has pale skin, freckles, full lips, and a vast cloud of curly hair, is part Barbadian, part German, part Irish, part Creole, part Scottish, part African American, and part Blackfoot. (People usually think she is Hispanic, the one thing she isn’t.) In short, it didn’t take a melting pot to create Thacker – more like a full scale chemistry laboratory.

A chem lab? Really? She’s a human being, not a compound. And I’m not sure that sex counts as biological tinkering.
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