politicized

Everything is so political nowadays, down to the music festivals you go to and the brands you wear. Things that are known to otherwise be apolitical since existence, have now been politicized.

The popular festival called “Coachella” held in Coachella Valley (well-known artists like Beyonce, and Eminem have performed at in the past) has now become politicized. People only go to the festival if they want to support people that give places money that endorse guns, are anti-LGBTQ, and are pro-life. “Think about this before you buy tickets to Coachella,”  a popular post circulating social media during this time of year, when tickets go on sale for Coachella, said. Last year, on April 15th, actress and model Cara Delevingne declared to her 41 million followers on Instagram, “I still refuse to go to a festival that is owned by someone who is anti-LGBT and pro-gun.”

Beloved designer brands flexed by many famous celebrities have become politicized. Italian designer brand Prada is known for handbags, travel accessories, perfumes, and other fashion accessories. In 2018, Prada was accused of racism and general insensitivity when they released there “Pradamalia” collection, the two characters, Otto and Toto (featured on keychains priced at around $550 and in store windows) were shockingly similar to a former racist movement. The dark monkeys with oversized red lips had too many similarities to blackface. Many celebrities and people on the media started to boycott Prada, such as director Spike Lee and rapper T.I.

(Gucci turtleneck) Photo Credit: CNN.com

In the winter of 2018, Gucci released a turtleneck that resembled many characteristics similar to blackface, like oversized red lips accompanied by a black outline. Celebrities and the media were enraged. People began to boycott Gucci. Rapper Soulija Boy claimed he is getting his Gucci logo tattoo removed from his forehead. Rapper, 50 Cent, posted a video to his 22 million fans burning a Gucci logo tee and captioning it “I gotta get rid of all the Gucci I have at home. I’m not supporting their brand anymore.” Rapper Lil Pump also made it clear he will not support Gucci anymore.

Fast food restaurant Chick-Fil-A has become politicized. Chik-Fil-A’s CEO Dan Cathay has made many homophobic comments in Pride Month (June) of 2012. Chik-Fil-A has also donated millions of dollars to numerous anti-gay organizations. This led to protests in stores as well as rallies. Chik-Fil-A is now an infamous anti-gay company.

Makeup company “Lime Crime” has become politicized. Founder of the company, Doe Deere, has made numerous racist comments and actions. She dressed up as Adolf Hitler, the leader of the Nazi party, shortly after releasing Lime Crime makeup. Lime Crime is now deemed as the most hated beauty company on the internet.

Political character has been added to these otherwise apolitical things and this is only the beginning of a much longer list.

The politicization of seemingly everything can be overwhelming at times. It can be hard to always know what’s happening and what to stay away from and what not to, especially when you’re a teenager and have not necessarily developed your own stance on these things. And, of course, people have different coping mechanisms to these things, some people choose to ignore the political aspect of their everyday choices, to not give more attention and fame to ordinary places and continue on with their life. Others fight, protest, and resist.

It’s up to you to know where you stand, but to know where you stand you have to know the issues at hand. Hopefully, now you know.

“Darkness can not drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.” – Martin Luther King Jr.

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Say Yes to The Dress

Last night, my best friend came over to my house to help me pick out what dress to wear for homecoming. I tried them on and got her feedback. Here’s what she had to say:

Dress One:

“You look like a disco ball.”

Dress Two:

“You look like a grandma.”

Photo Credit: tipsyelves.com

 

Dress Three:

“Take that off now, please.”

Dress Four:

“You still look like a grandma.”

Dress Five:

“Why did you even order that?”

Dress Six:

“You look like a hooker who’s going to a funeral for your hooker friend who died hooking up.”

Homecoming is in four days. The dress hunt continues.

Born in the Wrong Era

I often wonder if I’ve been born in the wrong era. Minding the politics and controversy in the older years, I fantasize over the fashion, music, and culture.

The clothes in the nineties, with the bright colored windbreakers, mom jeans, and Converse make me so happy.

In the fifties and sixties, the music was roaring, with soft tones and voices being interluded into the songs.

 

Photo Credit: Pinterest.com

 

Many people were so much happier in this time and lived their life without restraints. They were carefree, and went with the flow of everyone else.

Nowadays, life is more constricted with people being obsessed with technology and social media, and not finding the fun in life like people used to.

Social media has taken over the world, and don’t get me wrong, I’m still an addict with it , but if it wasn’t in the world, I wouldn’t care. I’d probably be a lot happier.

Though many people tend to argue, times were in some ways simpler in those days, and I wonder if that is why we keep trying to copy it.

What a Year So Far.

Life is moving fast. 2017 was a historic year for Asian representation in America.

Photo Credit: allkp
Photo Credit: chinafilminsider.com/

Last year Liu Yifei was cast as Mulan, Kelly Marie Tran became the first Asian American lead in a Star Wars movie, Bangtan Sonyeondan – better known as BTS – became the very first K-artist, besides PSY, to ever win a Billboard Music Award and the first K-group to ever perform at the American Music Awards and Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve. BTS also continue to break their own records in the Billboard standings and seem to only be growing in popularity.

Photo Credit: billboard.com

Only a month into 2018 Asian representation is looking up and just a couple of days ago BTS again made history as the first K-group and second K-artist ever to earn a RIAA Gold CertificationRIAA Gold Certification for their remix of their son “Mic Drop” with Japanese American DJ Steve Aoki and rapper Desiigner; and just today (February 4) Chinese Canadian singer Kris Wu became the first Chinese Artist to ever preform at the Superbowl Half-Time Show.

Photo Credit: nerdist.com

These examples are just a couple of the milestones that have been met in just a short amount of time. Hopefully these two events this year, and several from late last year, are indicative of how the rest of this year, and the future, will go on the Asian/ East Asian Representation front.

Skin

One of my favorite things in the world is skincare. Maybe not the most deep or expected of passions but know you know. While I may not have the best skin, I do really love washing and moisturizing my face, plus all the steps in between.

I remember as a kid I never washed my face, or occasionally I snuck some of my mom’s face wash, but that was it. Then when I got older and interested in actually caring for my face, I got whatever I saw show up the most often on drugstore shelves.

The face-wash made my face feel tight enough that someone could play a snare drum solo on my face. Whatever moisturizer I mistakenly picked up was essentially a too strong concentration of salicylic acid (an effective BHA acid in small doses) suspended in a silicone cream; it left my skin sensitive and irritated.

It was a dark time that almost killed any desire I had to take care of my skin.

It was frustrating, what was supposed to help me feel good about myself was instead making me feel like I didn’t even want to try to take care of myself. Instead of feeling relaxed, my skincare was stressing me out, which in turn made my skin freak out.

Photo Credit: Pinterest.com

So I began to actually research skincare. I started with the products that had made me so sad and pinpointed what ingredients didn’t work for me, and ones that could.

I followed obscure internet trails into back alley articles about the difference between moisture and hydration, pressure points to take down face swelling, and that products with pearl powder are known for their brightening properties.

Now, one of my favorite parts of skincare is all the research that goes into learning about different ingredients and their uses. In fact I often become obsessive and go down rabbit holes I didn’t even realize I stumbled into.

For example, did you know that snail mucin, which is exactly what it sounds like, is great for hyper-pigmentation, and that the best way to harvest it, cruelty- free, is to pamper the snails by putting them in a dark room and avoiding stressing them out. It’s like prepping escargot but the snails live in the end.

The more research I’ve done the more quickly I’ve discovered that skincare is an extremely subjective topic; recommendations and “holy grail” items don’t apply to all. While one person could love birch sap another could hate it, plus everyone’s skin is different.

Through all my research I also learned that caring for my skin isn’t about vanity, it is about taking care of myself mentally. It has become a part of maintaining my mental health.

I look forward to it before I go to bed and when I get out of bed in the morning. I use it to decompress at the end of the day or armor up for one. Skincare to me is time I have carved out for introspection and reflection, which helps me feel less anxious and better about myself, inwardly and outwardly.

A good book for more research is Charlotte Cho’s The Little Book of Skin Care.

A Project For Disaster

I’m no fashion designer. In fact I’ve never sewn a piece of clothing in my life, but I feel like I know what fashion is when I see it. I know fashion is supposed to be a statement of art, a piece of someone’s mind artistically constructed into something wearable, but sometimes I wonder how pieces of fabric are hideously sewn together, given a ridiculously high price because of its brand, and called fashion.

“Project Runway” is an amazing TV show which many talented and aspiring fashion designers enter in hopes of getting a spot in New York Fashion Week. I always found it incredible how people were able to construct amazing clothes under extreme pressure in, sometimes, just one day, especially in the unconventional challenges where the designers aren’t even allowed to use fabric.

“Project Runway” has always been my favorite TV show. I would go visit my aunt and curl up in the living room together and binge episode after episode, debating over who’s going to be the winner or who’s going to be out, eventually becoming a tradition during my visits. However, over the years the show has started to disappoint me. That isn’t to say that they aren’t amazing designers, but I feel like sometimes the winners are usually based off of likability versus actual raw talent.

Photo Credit: MMC News

I haven’t watched all of the most recent season, but I did see spoilers from the finale and I was not impressed… at all. The designers had weeks to come up with a fashion line, and the clothes they managed to make in one day were much more impressive than the ones they brought to the runway. The silhouettes of each piece were inexistent and bland, the color schemes were simple, and overall it just wasn’t nearly as mind blowing as the runway pieces from previous years. If I were a judge, I would’ve sent them all home, but I guess there has to be a winner, right?

If you need a good laugh, and want to see more of the most ridiculous “Project Runway” looks, click here

Why Can’t Boys Have Long Hair?

Photo Credit: Pinterest

If you read almost any dress code guideline, whether for school or for the workplace, an everlasting rule is that males must have short, groomed hair.

But why?

Obviously there are many double standards, both in the dress code and the real world. But many of these double standards apply to females, policing how much skin they can show or how much makeup they can wear, making sure they don’t “distract” others. These must be addressed, and they often are, even if no changes come from it.

But, many don’t address the fact that males aren’t allowed (whether in society, school, or work) to express themselves, and this goes much farther than just hair. It is considered outside of the societal norm for men to have long hair, earrings, wear “girly” clothing, or express themselves emotionally. If they present themselves in an effeminate way, they are considered inferior or mocked – called “girly” as though that’s an insult, or told that only females can only act certain ways and wear certain things, and vice versa. The reality is, both men and women have emotions and feelings, both want to express themselves, and they should be able to express and present themselves in any way they want. This something that society as a whole has to address and accept.