Fair Bat­tle

Your skin’s new­est su­per­heroes come in bot­tles, not with capes


The fash­ion in­dus­try has, for some years now, blurred the lines be­tween fem­i­nine and mas­cu­line. All of a sud­den, it’s no longer just about bright red lips re­in­forc­ing self-ex­pres­sion. The run­ways have been witness to neon eye­shad­ows, metal­lic lip­sticks, and other looks that are as strik­ing as they are odd. Trans­lated to re­al­ity, whether for a bride walk­ing down the aisle or her fa­ther by her arm, there are few things more in­spir­ing than some­one own­ing their self-image, whether it’s wholly nat­u­ral or am­ply aided by cos­met­ics.

Peo­ple es­tab­lish in­di­vid­u­al­ity through the un­con­ven­tional pat­terns of a dress, as well as their cho­sen scents and cos­met­ics. In fash­ion and beauty’s most gen­der-fluid era, in­dus­tries start to rec­og­nize that skin prob­lems and in­gre­di­ents sim­i­larly don’t dis­crim­i­nate be­tween sexes. They do, how­ever, have spe­cific pur­poses. For in­stance, acne plagues the oily and over-cleansed, mak­ing the Cor­si­can ce­drat ex­tracts of L’Oc­c­i­tane’s Ce­drat En­er­giz­ing Splash use­ful in mat­ti­fy­ing the face with its re­fresh­ing cit­rus prop­er­ties. It’s em­pow­er­ing to con­ceal years of im­per­fec­tions— ridges, zits, spots—with a cream.

Parad­ing one’s self while gilded with beauty prod­ucts, then, isn’t just a way to flaunt taste; it’s a life­style that re­veals gen­uine care of the self. Think of the blush­ing bride, for ex­am­ple. Her rosy flush as she walks down the aisle is partly due to the hard­work­ing Per­ri­cone MD No High­lighter High­lighter that looks com­pletely nat­u­ral, or the Stila Aqua Glow Foun­da­tion Serum that lent her face mois­ture, maybe even the Nars Op­ti­mal Bright­en­ing Con­cen­trate she used the night be­fore. To her au­di­ence, she comes off pam­pered; self-as­sured even. When it comes to mas­cu­line styles, from the shiny-as-patentleather hair of Clark Gable to Johnny Depp’s eye­liner, men have sim­i­larly trusted skin­care to save the day.

We’re lucky to live in a time of many karmic op­por­tu­ni­ties, where buy­ing a prod­uct can lead en­thu­si­asts to get an­other, and a Rus­tan’s Beauty Ad­dict Card can give them more in points and re­wards than when they started. Self-care need not be sci­en­tific. Ul­ti­mately, it’s about free­dom and ex­pres­sion, cre­at­ing new looks, rules, and ways to be per­ceived. If the Chanel Al­lure Homme Sport Cologne can give you an ex­tra air of con­fi­dence or if the L’Oc­c­i­tane Ce­drat Hand Cream can soften your hard­ened palms and rigid touches, then noth­ing is more sat­is­fy­ing than in­dulging in things that could boost your self­worth and leave a last­ing im­pact.

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