The conversation around gender is shifting. No longer is it just about traditional gender roles. Now, it’s about the role of gender itself. No longer is it just about two genders. Now, it’s about the unbundling of sex and gender and identity and the spectrum of gender identities. Let's unpack what this means for your business and marketing.
Anastasia Garcia creates images featuring women across the spectrum of shapes, sizes, races, ages and abilities. Her work has been featured for brands including Chromat, Amazon and Lane Bryant and in the documentary “Straight/Curve” about the body image crisis in fashion. When she thinks What the Future, she asks, “What if we eliminated beauty standards?”
Ipsos conducted a survey for RiverMend Health that shows that many of us are not. When asked about situations in which we feel “dissatisfied” with our bodies, only one in five reports always feeling satisfied. In contrast, nearly twice as many people —and more than twice as many women— report feeling dissatisfied when they look in the mirror.
So beauty for beauty’s sake is a thing in nature, yet science also tells us that there are certain biologically-driven standards. Facial symmetry, for example, is something humans are wired to find attractive. And so, in an Ipsos Global Advisor poll, we see remarkable consistency in physical definitions of beauty across nations and cultures.
Grooming has long been the domain of women. But as social mores evolve, affluent (household income $125,000+) Millennial men are making inroads into this formerly forbidden territory in ways their fathers couldn’t have imagined. Yet, while these men care as much about their appearance as women their age, old-fashioned attitudes about masculinity are creating tensions that brands and retailers should recognize—and resolve.