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What This Season’s ‘Real Beauty’ Campaigns Mean For You  


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MAR. 22, 2017:

New year, new beauty campaigns, new direction. The biggest brands are rebooting their images by aligning themselves with more positive, inclusive messaging. But what does that mean for the industry and how should we react?

‘Because I’m Worth It’ is the instantly recognizable slogan of L’Oréal Paris. This year, that message has been elegantly fine-tuned to ‘All Worth It’ to run alongside a UK-wide campaign helping young people turn self-doubt into self-worth. Sharing their experiences dealing with issues of body image and self-confidence, celebrities from actress Dame, Helen Mirren to singer, Cheryl, and model, Neelam Gill are the face of the films. L’Oréal even signed up male beauty blogger Jake-Jamie Ward aka The Beauty Boy as one of the first male campaign stars for the brand.

Similarly, James Charles was named CoverGirl’s first CoverBoy, and Muslim beauty blogger Nura Afia has become one of the ambassadors for its new So Lashy! mascara. Meanwhile, Milk Makeup launched its Blur the Lines campaign this month. ‘My main objective in my work is to create unity and equality by representing the spectrum of self-expression,’ creative director Georgie Greville told Bustle. Milk’s advertising strategy backs the brand’s new Blur Stick (which ‘truly works for any gender or skin tone,’ says Greville) and ‘anyone and everyone whose gender identities might not fit the traditional norm’.

Showcasing ‘real’ portrayals of beauty is not an entirely new concept. Dove launched the Campaign for Real Beauty back in 2004, and in celebration of 60 years promoting these ideals, it signed up renowned fashion photographer Mario Testino to shoot portraits for this year’s Real Beauty Pledge.

But what we are seeing now is a new wave of campaigns that ties in with the current global movement for change. It also signals a wider shift in the beauty industry to publicly demonstrate its responsibility for promoting positive self-image amongst audiences. That beauty bloggers are being recognized for championing similar ideals, which could lead to campaign stardom, and also highlights the growing influence of this community. It is no longer a question of whether to join the conversation, but when.

So what do you have to say about ‘real beauty’? Share in the comments.

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