Instagram Influencers Are All Starting To Look The Same. Here’s Why.

Instagram Influencers Are All Starting To Look The Same. Here's

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Social media influencers these days are starting to look like beauty clones. You know the look: a full pout, perfectly arched eyebrows, maybe some expertly applied eyeliner, topped off with a healthy dose of highlighter and cheek contouring. With a few makeup brushes, a contour palette and some matte lip color, you can be well on your way to looking like everyone else.

Thanks to the internet, Weingarten said, people no longer have to travel to see beauty trends from all over the world, nor do we need to wait for them to make their way to us. Because of that, we learn about trends that are popular in other parts of the world more quickly than we ever would have in the past, and we can participate in them. (Just think about Korean beauty and how quickly it exploded in the U.S. You can even buy specialty products at CVS and Walgreens.)

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Why Does Everyone Suddenly Have Fancy Fake Teeth?

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Michael Apa remembers the first time a patient told him she wanted her teeth fixed because she didn’t like the way they looked in selfies. It was 2015, and Apa’s patient was Huda Kattan, who had good reason to care about her smile: Kattan has leveraged her popular beauty blog and millions of Instagram followers to build a global cosmetics brand, Huda Beauty. In the process, her path to success has been dotted with thousands of close-up images and videos of her own face. To perfect her teeth, Kattan opted for porcelain veneers, which have exploded in popularity in the past 10 years.

Step Inside the YouTube-Fueled, Teenaged Extravaganza That Is Beautycon

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YouTube creator meetups are scheduled in hour-long blocks throughout the day. Tana is one of the few with two solo meetups, and the line for her first is overflowing its corral. A girl holds a glue-sticked poster: Your superhero wears a cape, mine wears mac honey love lipstick.

Taylor is close to the front, feet from the chair where Tana will sit. As we wait, she shows me a framed poem she wrote—entitled “An Influence”—that includes sweet (if dystopian) couplets like: “An environment which provides a positive escape / Through a false world that reality shaped.” The poem is signed, “God Bless, Taylor.”

The online beauty scene, for Taylor, is less about the makeup than following creators as one might General Hospital. Perhaps this is why she loves Tana Mongeau. Tana doesn’t claim any beauty expertise (and sometimes she actively rejects it). Her videos take the form of ebullient monologues, looping from silly into serious back to crass. Taylor calls Tana a storytime YouTuber. She communicates with fans like they’re up late at a sleepover, giddy from sugar, swapping racy stories…

“She’s created such a positive environment on the internet,” Taylor tells me. “To the point where the amount of interaction with her following has really made it feel like more of a family.”

Dove and Twitter Will Analyze Your Tweets To Gauge ‘Body Positivity’

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Are you indulging in body shaming via Twitter — perhaps without even being aware? Dove and Twitter will be happy to analyze your tweets and let you know.

In a partnership announced Saturday at SXSW, the two are unveiling the #SpeakBeautiful Effect tool, which allows users to retweet an invitation from the @Dove handle via accounts they want analyzed. Dove will tweet the user back a link with a personalized analysis of their tweeting tendencies in minutes.

New Dove research shows 62% of girls wish social media would “teach and empower them about body positivity,” so this is an effort to that end. Working on the #SpeakBeautiful project are Edelman Razorfish, VaynerMedia and Mindshare.

 

The Makeup Shake-Up

Illustration by Erik Carter

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A search for “make-up tutorial” on YouTube retrieves more than 20 million results, most of which aren’t as dramatic as Phan’s gender-bending performances… Many of these videos simply help viewers learn professional makeup techniques at home: the angular wings of a cat-eye, say, or smoky eyes just like Kim Kardashian’s. But with those basics covered, the ironclad law of web content — that there must always be more — has now brought us tutorials that go beyond these utilitarian roots and into territory that is artsier, weirder and far more subversive… These are more than viral stunts. The looks and trends explored in the more outré tutorials are often ones that are ignored by mainstream beauty publications and outlets, perhaps because the videos’ techniques are geared toward those with darker complexions and gender nonconformists. But the Internet can afford the space to include them, because the Internet has room for everyone. Seen this way, even a tutorial as seemingly impractical as Phan’s is about much more than learning extreme contouring techniques — it’s a means of expanding traditional notions about beauty, to the point where they explode.

Teens Are Doing the #KylieJennerChallenge and It Must Stop

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While Kylie Jenner has asserted that her apparently enhanced lips are natural, teenagers have taken to harming theirs to duplicate the Keeping Up With the Kardashians star’s puffy-pouty look.

If you put your the lips into a small glass container like a shot glass and suck as hard as possible, you can get them to briefly swell in a way that looks like you’ve just had a cosmetic injection. But the results of this do-it-yourself method can also be disastrous, with lips heavily bruised and even tearing.

Many people posted pictures and videos of their own debacles under the hashtag #KylieJennerChallenge, which took off Sunday evening.