Red lipstick is exemplary. In any case, recognizing its perplexing connection with the BIPOC community is significant. Numerous ladies of variety, myself included, were shown wearing red lipstick was not an image of refined gentility for us. Growing up, I connected red lipstick with spectacular white superstars like Marilyn Monroe and Taylor Swift. For a really long time, I figured the variety could look complimenting against fair skin. As I became older, I understood red lipstick looks a la mode on anybody and ethnic minorities have been wearing the tint as a device of articulation for quite a long time.
Red Lipstick as a Symbol of Elegance
In Ancient Mesopotamia, Sumerians imagined lipstick by pounding gemstones to make red-colored powder to shifting degrees of success.1 Cosmetologist Abu al-Qasim al-Zahrawi concocted the shaped lipstick in the Islamic Golden Age.
In Ancient Egypt, lipstick underscored economic wellbeing and complexity. Cleopatra utilized squashed bugs and carmine to devise a mark red lipstick.2 Likewise, in China a long time back, vermilion, creature fat, and mineral wax were a portion of the fixings used to make colored lipstick to demonstrate power.
Red Lipstick as a Symbol of Defiance
The set of experiences we have with red is tangled as it has likewise represented rebellion. In 2018, Nicaraguan people criticized the detainment of hostile to government dissidents and Daniel Ortega’s tyranny by wearing the mark red lipstick of extremist Marlen Chow. All the more as of late, in December 2019, a huge number of Chilean ladies walked in red scarves and lipstick as they censured sexual savagery.
Style student of history Shelby Ivey Christie notes many Black ladies wear red lipstick as a method for diverting the story following quite a while of hypersexualization and exaggerations. Likewise, Keka Araújo, independent columnist and end of the week supervisor for Black Enterprise, states “Red lipstick is a demonstration of opposition when worn by Black ladies.” Bottom line: red lipstick uproariously conveys our contemplations in regards to abusive frameworks and administration.
Red Lipstick as a Symbol of the Duality of Femininity
It was confining to figure just any semblance of Taylor Swift or Audrey Hepburn could pull red lipstick off. Presently when I apply it, it feels encouraging. I mostly owe this change to finding out about ladies like Kumander Liwayway3, a Filipina belle of the ball. She joined a guerilla development to battle against the Japanese control of the Philippines.
In the wake of joining the unrest at 22, Remedios Gomez Paraiso was named “Kumander Liwayway” (liwayway implies sunrise). She broadly dueled the individuals who raised doubt about her mastery because of her fight look, which included fragrance, cleaned nails, and a notable red lip.
Kumander Liwayway is only one illustration of a the lady duality of her character and utilized lipstick to feature the subtlety. She demonstrated there is a savagery in excellence as well as the other way around. Frida Kahlo’s ruby lips and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s red lip are other noticeable instances of ladies of variety driving with an unmistakable style.
As an eccentric Filipina lady, I am continually reconsidering what womanliness and magnificence resemble for me as it can feel like I am testing the pilgrim standard just by existing. Through the pandemic, red lipstick has been my method for wielding gentility. I may not be a champion like Remedios, yet I have my own fights to overcome. With a red lip, I feel sure to confront them.
At the point when we swipe on red lipstick, we ought to never stress over it being “to an extreme.” Like us, red lipstick can mean to such an extent. It can radiate strength and appeal in equivalent measure. Understanding what I do now, red lipstick isn’t saved for white women’s liberation or Hollywood allure. It has forever been fastened to minorities. I embrace the space it takes all the rage similarly as I embrace the space I take up.