Glossier wants you to be your own body hero
I love Glossier as a brand. They’re purely digital, their narrative and their products are beautifully constructed and they are cool as hell. I liked Glossier a lot even before trying their products, that used to be for sale in the US only (they are sold in Canada and the UK now, with more European countries on their radar). Heading to their showroom (because, for makeup, I’m old-school like that) was one of the first things on my to do list when I arrived in New York in April.
Some of their products I didn’t like enough, some I loved and bought (some of them twice). I absolutely loved their showroom, the purchase experience and the simple, delicate, smart packaging of every product they sell. I loved that their Balm Dot Com it’s meant to be applied “on lips, cuticles, on elbows, on your friends”. I love their site’s UI and their copywriting work. I love that the brand is about skin first, makeup second, smile always.
And although I love the brand, I laughed a lot with the “Glossier announces new line of makeup for women not already beautiful” satire article. Because, although the brand sells makeup that won’t “erase any evidence that you are, in fact, a real human being”, their makeup models are perfect human beings by society’s beauty standards. They don’t have any scars or spots or wrinkles to cover. But, on the other hand, I believe Glossier is not about perfect skin, but about empowering women to feel perfect on their skin – and they do a terrific work at that.
Who’s your body hero?
More and more brands are into featuring “real”, “authentic” bodies in their campaigns these days. But not as many as should be, and definitely not enough to undo the damage that decades of too-skinny models have done to our conception of what beauty looks like.
To launch their first line of body care products, Body Hero, Glossier has chosen an array of beautiful, diverse bodies belonging to an array of beautiful, smart, influential women. Pregnant Olympic medalist Swin Cash Canal, clinical researcher Mekdes Mersha, business woman Tyler Haney, fashion creative director Lara Pia Arrobio, and plus-size model Paloma Elsesser. All of them with great personalities, great stories and follower counts to match.
Paloma Elsesser‘s contribution to the Body Hero campaign is the one I love the most. I’ve been following her on Instagram for years, first only because we share fashion and culture influences and I love her style, then because she started modeling and collaborating with brands I like (Asos, Nike, Timberland, Rihanna’s Fenty…) – and I love where her career is going. Her activation of the campaign, an Instagram post with 27K likes in the first 24 hours, enriches the product launch with the right balance of authenticity, vulnerability and empowerment.
I chanted to myself “this isn’t for you paloma. this isn’t about you. get out of your ego. be of service” over and over until the anxiety subsided and I was convinced of the mantras which guide me through many jobs, most importantly this one.
I did this to show that being fat isn’t a burden. Being fat isn’t ugly or shameful. To prove to one person that it isn’t BRAVE to be fat, but bountiful. And for that young girl looking on instagram, or walking down Spring st, that she is fucking perfect despite the precarious and irresponsible versions of beauty we are urged to digest.
I think it’s very important that voices like Paloma’s are heard. And I love seeing New York covered with images of diverse bodies and good design. Congratulations Glossier on an amazing launch campaign, and thanks for your help making the world a better place.