When the cosmetics giant L’Oréal Paris announced a mixed-race British DJ as its first transgender brand ambassador last month, the fashion-industry press rushed to applaud the multibillion-dollar company’s latest gesture toward “diversity” and “inclusion.” Munroe Bergdorf got a byline in the British edition of Vogue for an article entitled “What Makeup Means to Me,” while W Magazine’s Marissa Mullerpraised L’Oréal for having “made huge strides” toward the “elusive goal” of “representation for all women in fashion and beauty.” Such representation now must include not only “women” with male genitalia, but also tattooed lesbians like Ruby Rose, who has been an ambassador for Maybelline cosmetics and other brands. Fat women are likewise part of the diversity-and-inclusion trend, with plus-size models doing fashion shows for designer brands, a “shift toward runway realism” that is “refreshing,” as Vogue’s Janelle Okwodu gushed.
If a girl wants to be truly stylish for the fall 2017 season, she must avoid being thin, white or heterosexual, and maybe she actually shouldn’t be a girl at all. Not only can boys become makeup models, but girls can become boys in the gender-blender Internet marketplace where young people shop around for trendy identities.
“Social contagion” is a phrase frequently used by those concerned about what they see as a disturbing increase in transgenderism among young people. One site paying attention to this trend,4thWaveNow.com, includes many “parents of teens who became convinced they were the opposite sex after a steady diet of social media and/or peer influence.” Emotionally vulnerable adolescents sometimes quite suddenly reach the conclusion that they are transgender, according to parents who say their teenagers decided to switch genders after just a few weeks of watching the videos promoting “transition” that now proliferate on YouTube. Dr. Lisa Littman of Mount Sinai Hospital’s Icahn School of Medicine recently published a study about “Rapid Onset of Gender Dysphoria in Adolescence and Young Adults.” There is no doubt that this is a growing trend, which the Internet has made a worldwide phenomenon. In England, for example, the National Health Service reports a four-fold increase in the number of minors seeking sex-change “therapy” at taxpayer-funded Gender Identity Clinics. And with transgenderism now being promoted as a fashion statement, this trend is unlikely to abate anytime soon.
Likewise, the obesity epidemic has given rise to marketing campaigns by companies eager to cash in on the “fat acceptance” movement which, likes the transgender movement, has spread its message via online social media. Fat women promoting themselves as “body positivity” role models on Instagram, Facebook, and blogs can get paid as fashion “influencers” by brands eager to sell their wares to this growing (pardon the pun) market segment. Here, too, the intersection between commerce and social-justice ideology is evident. Just as tobacco companies once used feminism as a gimmick to sell cigarettes (“You’ve Come a Long Way, Baby,” the Virginia Slims ads proclaimed), now the rhetoric of liberation is leveraged as a marketing tool by companies selling jumbo-sized clothing to obese women who view their fatness as a feminist statement.
Among the promoters of fat feminism are lesbian fashionistas like Nicolette Mason, who wrote her college thesis on “Heteronormativity in Mass Media and the Impact on LGBT Youth” and whose wife is a research director at the Los Angeles LGBT Center. Mason has more than 150,000 followers on Instagram and recently launched a new fashion line in partnership with Gabi Gregg (250,000+ Instagram followers) featuring products with slogans like “Feminist AF.”(If you don’t know what “AF” stands for, ask you teenage daughter, although it might help to know that “F” is for a word that Gregg applies to “the pathetic excuse for a human that is Donald Trump.”) Lesbianism has become a marketing trend all its own, as exemplified by the popularity of “The Future Is Female,” originally a 1970s lesbian separatist T-shirt slogan embraced by Hillary Clinton’s supporters in 2016, with a boost from L.A. boutique owner Rachel Berks and supermodel Cara Delevingne. Berks is a self-declared “queer feminist” who donates a portion of the proceeds from the shirts to Planned Parenthood.
Anti-male slogans as fashion statements reflect the extent to which the politics of feminism has become a dominant influence among the teen and 20-something audience targeted by companies selling clothing, cosmetics, and other beauty products. Cashing in on feminism is obviously a challenge, given that the movement’s grim young ideologues are generally anti-capitalist and anti-beauty, too. Feminists denounce ideals of beauty as patriarchal, heteronormative and toxic, even fascist and racist. “Eurocentric beauty standards have been a tool for destruction and dehumanization throughout history” and are “rooted in racism and ableism… xenophobia, imperialism, and white supremacy,” feminist Maya Gittleman has declared. It is wrong to be beautiful, many feminists believe. Far from wishing to attract male admiration, they consider it oppressive for men even to look at women, “objectifying” them with the “male gaze.” Feminists often pursue an aesthetic of deliberate ugliness — tattoos and facial piercings, hair dyed weird colors (green, pink, purple, etc.) — in an effort to make themselves as scary-looking as possible.
Feminism’s anti-beauty ideology would seem to make the movement an unlikely ally for the fashion industry, but as L’Oréal’s signing of Munroe Bergdorf suggests, corporate executives think they can co-opt feminism simply by making a few shrewd “diversity” gestures. This might be a miscalculation, considering the denouement of the Bergdorf saga. Just days after L’Oréal’s new transgender ambassador was announced, the Daily Mail quoted his/“her” Facebook rant attacking white people, whose “entire existence is drenched in racism” because “their race is the most violent and oppressive force of nature on Earth.” Bergdorf had issued this racial denunciation, so sweeping as to include his/“her” own white mother, immediately after the violence at Charlottesville, and subsequently claimed his/“her” words had been quoted “out of context.” However, the controversy was enough to prompt L’Oréal to jettison Bergdorf, whom the company previously had hailed as “the face of modern diversity.” In a statement, L’Oréal declared: “We support diversity and tolerance towards all people irrespective of their race, background, gender and religion.… We believe that the recent comments by Munroe Bergdorf are at odds with those values, and as such we have taken the decision to end the partnership with her.”
L’Oréal claims to embrace “diversity and tolerance,” but the feminist movement, fighting against the alleged “intersectionality” of oppression, is the enemy of such values. In the 21st century, feminism increasingly seeks to silence dissenting opinions by defining disagreement as “hate speech.” This was whyGoogle was forced to fire James Damore last month after his internal memorandum raised questions about the company’s “diversity” program.
Feminists are intolerant of basic facts about biological differences between men and women, which is why L’Oréal was celebrated for playing along with the charade that Munroe Bergdorf is a woman. An ideology that cannot tolerate truth is not a beautiful thing, and the fashion industry’s efforts to profit by cashing in on feminism as a trend are likely to produce ugly results.
1. Payne Stewart
If you are going to dress like a modern fashion maverick on the course, you better have the game to back it up. Fortunately for the plus fours-wearing, Argyle-sock sporting, flat cap-crowned Stewart, he did…
2. Ben Hogan
Golfing great Hogan won nine major championships, but he scores a perfect ten in the style stakes. Always dapper and impeccably tailored, he never hit the links without his signature hat and ubiquitous cigarette.
3. Ted Rhodes
African-American golfer Rhodes had the game, he had the look – a unique hipster jazz fashion sense – and he was super cool. Hell, he had it all. Quite simply he was the Tiger Woods of his era.
4. Seve Ballesteros
“I don’t want people to watch the way I dress,” Ballesteros once said of the interest generated by his classically simple Seventies style. “I want people to watch the way I play.” Well, sorry, Seve… but we did both.
5. Walter Hagen
Not just a well-dressed for a golfer, Hagen was well-dressed, full stop. His eye-catching style, handmade outfits and tailored knitwear helped transform the image of golf in the Twenties and Thirties.
6. Arnold Palmer
Known in the golf world as the king of cool (even before Steve McQueen copyrighted the title), Palmer dressed on the course like he should have been in the Rat Pack. A Fifties vision in flat-fronted trousers, fitted shirts, black-and-white brogues… and a cardigan.
7. Rikard Karlberg
Sweden’s Karlberg is a modern master with a unique taste in fashion. Mixing flat caps and a hipster beard, with the sharp lines and slim fit of Hugo Boss Green, he embodies the golf look of 2017.
8. Gary Player
The Johnny Cash of the golf course, South African Player is known for his adherence to a single stylistic principle: always wear black. His father suggested he have a golfing gimmick and the “Black Knight” chose to wear one colour throughout his career. It worked.
9. Jack Nicklaus
The Golden Bear wasn’t the best dresser in the game when he was at the height of his powers, but he makes this list because of his green jackets. As a six-time winner of the Masters, we think that is about the best fashion statement any golfer can ever make.
10. Jesper Parnevik
Thanks to bands like The Beastie Boys, the Nineties was the decade where golf became cool again. And the golfer that embodied that resurgence in style was Jesper Parnevik, replacing pastels with a slim-fitting mod look, finished off with a flip-billed hat.
And five of the worst…
1. John Daly
The man, the myth, the trouser mistakes.
2. Woody Austin
Dressed in shirts that looked like he was trying to win a bet.
3. 1999 US Ryder Cup Team
No. Just… no.
4. Ian Poulter
When he gets it right, he’s great. But when he gets it wrong…
5. Donald Trump
The Donald sports a look that is pure coffee.
Now, thanks to popular demand, we’re bringing back Video Game Fashion, As Reviewed By People Who Know Fashion.
This time we’re focusing exclusively on Pokemon.
The experts: the world class team of beauty and fashion editors who make up POPSUGAR Australia and Who What Wear Australia.
Let’s meet them.
Lisa Patulny, Editor of Byrdie
Ashling Lee, Editorial Assistant, POPSUGAR
Alexandra Whiting, Lifestyle Editor, POPSUGAR
Genevieve Rota, Entertainment Editor, POPSUGAR
OKAY, LET’S REVIEW THE FASHION!
Lisa: Ash is the perfect example of someone being so great at their job it doesn’t matter what they wear. He’s the Steve Jobs of Pokemon trainers.
Ashling: The ultimate chill, cool-dude get-up: baseball cap, denim, open shirt layered over a v-neck. I mean he’s my kind-of namesake so is automatically cool. 😉
Genevieve: I know this guy! He’s a little cutie. But he’s just a kid, right? We can’t judge his style, his mum probably picked it out for him. (But Ash, please try and stick to a more cohesive colour scheme next time. And why is your shirt stained poo brown?)
Alexandra: When the animator was designing Ash, he had a picture of Michael J. Fox circa Back to the Future stuck on the wall. He doesn’t get a lot of outfit alterations throughout the series either, but he’s made it iconic so I can’t really fault it. Sometimes an outfit is all about the attitude.
Lisa: Alain, we need to talk. Harem pants are not for tucking into boots—those are skinny jeans my friend. Harem pants are for people who’ve just come back from finding themselves in Peru and quote Neruda a lot and rarely shower. Also why is the Cheshire Cat’s tail wrapped around your neck?
Ashling: I find it really hard to layer clothing well – it’s a combination of either not owning enough layerable clothing or just laziness – but this guy looks perfectly prepped for trans-seasonal weather. Is that scarf hand-made?
Genevieve: This guy is clearly pretty chic and with a name like Alain, how could he not be? Is that a scarf around his neck, or a creature? I’m not 100 percent sure but either way, he needs to keep it. I’m not into the gloves (too Michael Jackson circa “Bad”) but I am into the effort he’s put in layering 3 pieces on his top half.
Alexandra: I have a few questions about Alain’s scarf. Is it alive? Is it a Pokemon? Or does Alain simply exist in a lower level of gravity where scarfs float and clothes remain nicely aerated. Jokes at Alain’s expense aside, the kid looks fresh off the Marc Jacobs AW18 runway. Elevated sports luxe with a touch of effeminate fancy. Classic MJ.
Lisa: Apparently the only part of Dawn’s body that feels the cold is her neck. That’s the only reasonable explanation for this outfit which consists of a skirt the size of a postage stamp, a singlet, one of Harvey Specter’s vests and A SCARF. Get changed Dawn, you’re not going out like that.
Ashling: WHAT FUN! I mean, she’s wearing millennial pink, so she already wins.
Genevieve: MILLENNIAL PINK! Also, moon boots as fashion? Comfort level: extreme. Dawn is way ahead of her time, and she knows it.
Alexandra: Dawn looks like a classic US basic circa 2005. You know, the mall-strolling, Ugg-wearing (she actually is wearing Uggs, right?), gum-chewing basic with way too many accessories. I can see six items I would have previously listed as “instant outfit updaters” in my mag days: beanie, hairclips, neck scarf, vest (so ‘00s!), wrist watch and black knee-high socks. Actually, I think Britney Spears wore this exact outfit to the premier of Crossroads.
Lisa: Maybe I shouldn’t have been so harsh on Dawn—this guy is walking around in a pirate coat with no shirt on. Also, can we talk about the size of his collar? I’ll say it. That collar is compensating for something.
Ashling: I have so many questions for this dude. Is he shirtless under that trench? Why? Is that intentional? How long did it take to grow that moustache? Is it easy to maintain? Doesn’t it get in the way when he tries to speak?
Genevieve: Drake looks mad at me so I’ll tread carefully. You know, the coat is incredible. The belt, if you add a metal G, is a dead ringer for the Gucci one “fashion girls” can’t seem to get enough of. And the harem pants are always a yes in terms of effortless style. But all I can see is that moustache, and I’d much prefer if that wasn’t the case. Let it go, Drake. Show off that chiseled jaw.
Alexandra: I’ll pay the nautical nod to John Galliano, but there’s a fine line between couture and costume, and unfortunately this is the latter.
Lisa: Elesa is wearing Gen Z Yellow which means she’s too young to know what happens to your abs when your metabolism goes to shit.
Ashling: This is also another very on-trend colour – yellow. I kinda dig this – it may be a bit weird – like, I still don’t really know what’s going on here with the dangly stuff – but she manages to wear a skimpy outfit well.
Genevieve: I’m going to go right ahead and assume those headphone tentacles do something powerful – otherwise I’m not sure why they’re there. Tights get a rough trot as a fashion faux pas but with legs like those I’m glad Elesa is throwing caution to the wind. Also, we have another trendsetter in our midst: Gen Z yellow is a total thing right now, and Elesa was there first.
Alexandra: There is no doubt jazzed-up headphones have had several runway moments. Dolce and Gabbanna, Fendi, Chanel, but these look more Alexander Wang. Lots of cut-outs, a minimal colour palette, skin-tight leggings, oh she’s even wearing a chocker, this is a Wang girl for sure.
Lisa: Lose the old man braces and she’s basically Bella Thorne.
Ashling: So. Damn. Cute. I love everything about this – the bright denim overalls, the crop top, the pig tails . . . Would actually copy this and wear in Summer. Or if I was going to a music festival.
Genevieve: How cute is this gal! And why isn’t she in Bondi where she belongs?
Alexandra: Now Misty I know well, and I have long lamented that she is dressed like a tween who was sent to Summer Camp and grew out of all her clothes. The top is shrunk, her shorts are basically underwear, and I know she’s wearing braces that would suggest she needs them to hold up too-big pants, but I’d argue girl is using that stretch to strap down her boobs that just grew in – mum forgot to pack her training bra. And the side pony. I can’t.
Lisa: Not joking—is this a Gossip Girl character? I smell a lawsuit.
Ashling: This is nice but in a sort of average way. Nothing super offensive or weird, just very stock standard female video game character sort of thing. The teeny tiny waist, short mini skirt, thigh high socks, voluminous hair…
Genevieve: OK this girl is so clearly based on Serena Van Der Woodsen from Gossip Girl — or is it vice versa? Serena is definitely the most popular girl in school. There’s too much going on but she pulls it off in a Cher Horowitz kinda way. Do people wear sunglasses on their hats? This has me confused.
Alexandra: Hey girl! Serena reminds me exactly of Stacey from The Baby-Sitters Club. Stacey grew up in NYC but then moved to the provinces (well, Stoneybrook) living her big city life behind but keeping that sense of fashion. It was also the ‘90s. Serena, Stacey, same thing.
Lisa: Steven is that weird pale guy in his late ‘20s who only dates art school students, has a put on English accent and swears he’s Noel Fielding’s second best friend. (A quick FB search will tell you he grew up in Padstow and used to wear Etnies and a lot of Billabong.)
Ashling: I’m getting a bit of Dorian Grey and weirdly, Targaryen vibes from this guy? (Is it the hair I wonder?)
Genevieve: Can I just say that I had NO idea Pokemon had so many human characters. Is this a recent development? I feel like Steven should give Matt Preston his cravat back and maybe ease up on the skin-tight trousers. The torture devices around his wrists can go, and then I think we’ve got a pretty slick dude! Cool hair.
Alexandra: If you told me Steven was Karl Lagerfeld’s new muse/companion I wouldn’t be surprised. I’d probably stalk his social media and write five stories about him. His hair colour is my next big pick for colour trends (pink is done), Kylie Jenner has already tried it so as soon as Summer festival season hits you’ll see it everywhere, topped with a flower crown. The only part of the outfit I think Karl would veto is the crown-like jacket cuffs. He leads the house of Chanel and Coco always said “take one thing off before you leave the house”, plus, Karl doesn’t like being upstaged.
Lisa: I refuse to comment. Get it? That was a garbage joke. (Did it again.)
Ashling: What . . . is this thing and is it OK? It looks scared shitless and in need of a tender loving home.
Genevieve: Um, I love its colouring? Khaki green is all the rage for interiors. And the millennial pink on his/her wings doesn’t go unnoticed – stylish touch, Trubbish.
Alexandra: I feel like you’ve added Trubbish as a joke in an otherwise very serious examination of Anime outfits, but seriously, what hallucinogenic drug were the artists smoking when they came up with this?
(CNN)The tiny Southeast Asian sultanate of Brunei is better known as an exporter of oil and gas than of fashion.
Designer Christian Siriano has put some pretty big names on the best-dressed list. But it’s his fashions for women of all shapes, shades and sizes that give him a unique style. Serena Altschul has more:
When it comes to fashion, one name that’s trending is Christian Siriano. And with awards season in full swing, the 31-year-old is starting to feel the pressure.
“It is a big moment,” he said of the Oscars red carpet. “Because so many people watch and so many people judge. There’s a lot of red carpet commentary, some unwanted!”
Judging from this year’s Golden Globe Awards, where three stars (Angela Bassett, Rachel Bloom and Issa Rae) wore his designs, and the Emmys, where he dressed nine, his clothes are wearing well.
“So that’s a record then?” Altschul asked.
“I don’t even know if it was a record, but it was quite a lot!” he laughed.
Siriano’s client list is impressive. It includes a galaxy of stars, some of whom may shine at tonight’s Academy Awards. But when asked to share who might be wearing Siriano tonight, he demurred. “I can’t, because I don’t know!”But he does know fashion. Siriano recently revealed his fall line during New York Fashion Week. The theme was “The Desert,” and backstage he was surprisingly cool.
“I try to be a little Zen. I really can’t stress myself out so much. But that five minutes before, when we’re really, like, getting dressed and ready, that’s when it’s scary.”
Fashion is a high-stakes business, but Siriano is willing to take risks. Take a close look at the runway models: they are all shapes, shades and sizes, and it’s all by design.
“I don’t care what size they are, I don’t care where they’re from. I just want them to feel good in what we’re creating for them,” he said.
That attitude is what brought Siriano to fashion in the first place. Born in Annapolis, Md., he was 13 when he started designing clothes, inspired by his size 16 mother and size 2 sister.
“I had every color, ethnicity, every size, every person around me. So it just wasn’t different. I think that that’s what I’m trying to get people used to, that it should just be the norm. It doesn’t have to be, like, a topic.”
Siriano’s creativity was encouraged by his parents, and in 2004 he moved to London where he interned with celebrated designers Vivienne Westwood and Alexander McQueen.
But when Siriano returned home, he struggled to find work, until he auditioned for the fashion competition show, “Project Runway.”
His highly-theatrical approach to clothing earned him a lot of attention. He became the show’s youngest winner, an experience he looks back on with mixed emotions. “That’s like an actress who can’t stand to be known for a film that she did her whole career, you know? That can be frustrating. But I definitely think now I probably wouldn’t do it.”
“But you wouldn’t be where you are,” Altschul said.
“I definitely would be in a different place than I am now.”
Siriano has had his hits and (some think) misses, like this dress worn by actress Christina Hendricks at the 2010 Golden Globes (left).
“We got a lot of hate on that dress. Tons of hate. People hated it! [Someone] said, ‘Don’t put a big girl in a big dress.’”
But it meant the world to him last summer when Michelle Obama appeared at the Democratic National Convention clad in a classic blue dress he designed. “I’m okay with saying that that definitely changed my career.”
Emboldened by success, Siriano willingly broke the high-fashion mold by dressing “Saturday Night Live” actress Leslie Jones, for her 2016 “Ghostbusters” premiere, after her tweet revealed that other designers declined.
And he capped the year off with his marriage to singer-songwriter Brad Walsh.
On the red carpet, the runway, or anywhere, Christian Siriano has made his mark as a designer for every body, like it or not.
Altschul asked, “So when people say, ‘Oh, how could you do that?,’ of course you’re going to take it personally?”
“Yeah. You take it really personally. But then you do it again!” he laughed. “My always thing is, if I waited around for certain people to come around and support [me], I’d still be waiting.”
Say hello to a brand new year of the best & worst of men’s fashion Instagrams, a place where we let you guys walk the talk in the style game.
Fashion is after all a way of expression so looking towards the grassroots level will always reveal gems and horrors in the form of dapper threads, streetwear and sometimes, straight up nudity disguised as fashion.
The best part of men’s fashion Instagrams is that it’s as real as it gets. Good or bad it’s all good for inspiration or a decent laugh.
Have a scroll through the gallery to see what we mean.
There are multiple entry points into the shows “Threads of History: Two Hundred Years of Fashion” and “Embellished: Adornment Through the Ages” at the Savannah College of Art and Design Atlanta.
For these exhibitions, more than 70 garments, and an abundance of hats, shoes and parasols, have been assembled from Palermo, Italy, collector Raffaello Piraino’s archives, to show the shifts in clothing from the 18th through the 20th centuries.
Fashion lovers undoubtedly will respond to the sheer beauty of many of these garments, from a 1969 cloche whose chiffon curls mimic the petals of a chrysanthemum, to the incredible detail and delicacy of 19th century satin and leather baby shoes. Accessories and fashions include works from high-profile fashion stars like Elsa Schiaparelli, Courreges (a bizarre pair of sunglasses inspired by Eskimo sun protection), Christian Dior and a Yves Saint Laurent rooster feather bolero jacket from 1970.
History lovers will appreciate how these twinned exhibitions show the fluctuations of fashion and how the radical shifts in clothing related to the historical events of the era. That includes the move away from grandiose, embroidered, ornamentation-rich gowns in the 18th century French rococo period to the subdued, even plain, empire waist dresses that came after the French Revolution. Later fashion innovations like the miniskirt and the bikini have been controversial, but the wrong outfit could get you killed in the purge of aristocrats in post-revolutionary France.
“Threads of History” is also a fascinating, voyeuristic survey of the daily life of our ancestors, when Victorian women used elaborate metal clamps called “skirt lifters,” a tong-like device whose function was two-fold: It was used to lift complicated skirts for walking or sporting activities, and also to show off a pretty petticoat beneath a dress.
Women’s fashion of the past was enticingly ornate, but could cause the wearer to fear the threat of fire or accident when their massive crinolines were caught up in streetcars or strayed too close to the fireplace.
“Embellished: Adornment Through the Ages,” which focuses on the accessories, from hats to smoking pipes to garters, is a marvel of strange materials and forgotten objects. There are beaver fur top hats and jewelry purposefully treated with radium or uranium to give glass a green or yellow cast. Forgotten but once-essential items on display include the circa 1870 chatelaine (the silver jewelry, hung like a janitor’s keys from a lady’s waist, whose charms — scissors, a cat’s head, a book — proclaimed her many hobbies and interests).
The exhibition of clothes in “Threads” also shows the remarkable strides made in the role of women, echoed in the garments they wore. Director of fashion exhibitions Rafael Gomes keeps an illustration in his behind-the-scenes SCAD fashion workshop of how violently the use of the corset — often employed from childhood on in past centuries — could deform and shape the female body, relocating organs and impeding movement.
As lovely as they are, these garments also were representations of societal control that affected every aspect of women’s lives: how they stood, how they dressed, how they moved, how they gave birth. The mannequins for the exhibition had to be sculpted, cut down and reworked in order to accommodate the tiny 18-inch or smaller waists and altered rib cages these fashions demanded.
A fascinating treatise on both the expressive potential of fashion, and its many strange incarnations, these exhibitions can leave viewers with the sensation of both recognition and a surreal disconnect from the strange alternate reality of the past.