WATCH: Vice Fashion Week Internationale | The Beauty Hierarchy | Aesthetically Pleasing

WATCH: Vice Fashion Week Internationale | The Beauty Hierarchy

I stumbled upon some really interesting documentaries yesterday on YouTube via Vice. The series is called Fashion Week Internationale and it explores the fashion weeks that happen all around the world - not just Milan, London, New York, and Paris- and the issues behind them relating to beauty and politics. There are some Beautiful women (and men - peep the Rio video) in these videos and great fashions.

It was an interesting insight on the worldwide beauty standards. But it wasn't at all surprising- pretty much all of these country's fashion weeks catered to European fashion and ideals of beauty. Many of the issues focused on in the mini-docs was relating to equal treatment in the fashion world and the harms and results of a society striving for European approval. In an industry that in general leads its followers striving for perfection, its sad that the very exclusive standard has been applied to people all around the world.

If anything, these documentaries reinforced the sad notion that on a worldwide "beauty hierarchy", The black woman is presented to be at the bottom of the totem pole.

In the Colombia video, the host participated in a photoshoot and jokingly told the Columbian photographer to photoshop Beyonce's face over hers and he winced in disgust and said "But shes a little bit black, why would you want to be black?" Given that Beyoncé is perfection and that the documentary was not even focusing on race, I was very taken aback.

Now, this sentiment was multiplied to the extreme in videos like Brazil, where runways weren't even half as diverse as the population, and in the Caribbean where skin bleaching was rampant as  this trend of self hate being fueled by this media takeover.

The only nation whose major fashion week did not emulate this European standard was Nigeria. The designers fashion was based in traditional African patterns and dress.There were organizations shown in Brazil and other nations who hosted their own events to uplift all beauty. But these events will always be inferior to mainstream fashion events where the skinny long haired European beauty will dominate. And in Columbia the shared belief was that in order to compete with the world in fashion and media, they had to apply that European aesthetic.

The series is in its second season. It doesn't only talk about race, there's a lot on plastic surgery, homosexuality, transgendered, and more. They've covered pretty much every continent, and did a great job of doing so in my opinion. Above are my favorite episodes, check out the others on the Vice YouTube page!

Do you think the fashion industry will ever abandon European standards of beauty? What was your favorite video?
-Anna Son


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