How The Idea of Feminism Really Affects The World of Fashion

Lujain Taleb لُجَيْن طالِب

?Beirut, Lebanon ?LAU Fashion Design Lifestyle-Fashion Blogger

Be yourself


Have you ever thought for a minute why you dress the way you do? Are you confident about who you are? Why do you pose the way you do? Are you forming yourself, or is the world around you forming you? This article is not just about fashion and accessories, this is my first blog post, and I decided to dedicate it to praise all the girls out there who dress to impress themselves, and not the people around, to the girls who work hard independently without letting one man step on their effort. I would just like to at least try prove a point that is usually ignored, a point of which most of you do not understand. What is possible for women today? How are women actually being depicted in advertisements, articles, and movies? Why should women’s success be a threat to men? Why is it that the culture is forming people, rather than the people forming culture? These are the questions that flood my head, and the answer is simply one word, one definition.  


We teach girls to shrink themselves

“We say to girls, you can have ambition, but not too much. You should aim to be successful, but not too successful. Otherwise, you would threaten the man.” (Ngozi Adichie, 2013) Other than media workers and agencies, the society is mistaken with the answer and definition that they have come up with. “Feminists are women who are unhappy because they cannot find husbands, so envy them. Feminists are women who hate men” they said. Let us put this aside for a second.


We live in a world full of stereotypes that sadly we abide by. “We live in a world where it is already predetermined by our sex how we should act, what we should wear, and how we should look.” First off: housewife, cooking, laundry, cleaning. What scientist on this planet decided that women are born with cooking and cleaning genes? Who even decided that what one becomes is based on their genes or hormones? I do not recall hormones for creativity, hormones for intelligence, hormones for innovation who are ironically only present in a man’s body. Moreover: emotional, weak, vulnerable, minority, silent. How would one feel if all their accomplishments and abilities were ignored? Won’t they feel weak and vulnerable? Why does the society initially define women with these specific words when the society itself is what makes women be this way. You teach girls to be ashamed, you teach girls to cover themselves and cross their legs. You make them feel as though their existence is already a mistake that they should feel guilty about for the rest of their lives. You stop girls and women from their desires, from raising their voices. “They grow up – and this is the worst thing you do to girls – they grow up to be women who have turned pretense into an art”. Women are not forced to face these stereotypes until the end of time. The images and articles present in the media and in the social world can be changed for long-term solutions that would change the perception of women in the eyes of the world.

The real world

To many of you reading this and thinking that this problem is not actually present in our world today, I gathered some simple facts that prove the opposite. The famous political activist Wangari Maathai once said, “The higher you go, the fewer women there are”. The highest-paid female movie star, Angelina Jolie, makes about the same per movie as the two lowest-paid male stars. Jennifer Lawrence makes 11 million dollars less than Adam Sandler. Women make only 77.5 cents for every dollar that men earn. Women were quoted in only 19% of news articles in January and February of 2013.

Linking feminism to fashion

To connect this issue to fashion and lifestyle, think about the outfit you wore last weekend. Did you pick out this outfit because YOU loved how you looked wearing it, or because SOMEONE ELSE did? Who were you trying to impress? Or were you forced upon it? Do you feel pressured by your society, your parents, or your siblings on how you dress or interact? Do you feel threatened by your male colleagues at work, college, or school? They say the most successful bloggers/influencers are the ones who show their true selves, rather than be a reflection of the society and of stereotypes.

Be original

Personally, when I first started by fashion blog on Instagram, a young girl in my old high school would come up to me and ask me for advice on how to start a blog, what to wear, how to look “as original”, how to be her true self, how to gain self confidence. Not trying to brag, but I admired this girl, not because she liked my blog, but because she, and I hope many, realized that she wants to step outside the box that she has been forced into, and wants to create, inspire, and impress by being ORIGINAL. She wanted a change in herself. I advise all the young girls out there to PLEASE start their day by loving who they see in the mirror, by impressing themselves FIRST, by being true to who they are, to how they think, and WHAT they think of. This is not just about your outfit.

Do better, be better

People should start aiming for an egalitarian society. A society of psychological, social, economic, and political stability. A society aware of the human rights, of women’s rights, of young girls’ rights. Start by raising your daughters differently, not just your daughters, but also your sons. Teach them to focus on abilities, to focus on interests, and not on gender. Women of all nations, of all races, of all ages, no longer be remorseful for your femaleness. Crave respect, refuse stereotypes. Allow me to remind you of the answer that most naive people came up with about who feminists are. Does it make sense now why anyone would think of such an answer? Yes, there is a problem with gender as it is today. We must do better, BE BETTER. We must find the real answer to all the questions people will ask about women in this world. We must all be able to see the true answer, the true definition, the true key that all women need. Feminism. Feminism is our key. Don’t be afraid to express who you are, show that you are different, that you stand out. Be proud, and not ashamed.