On TikTok, Masculinity Gets a New Look
TikTokers explore what it means to be “pretty like a boy”.
( A screenshot from @lilyyyalice / TikTok )
The terms “blurring” and “blending” have taken on a new meaning in the makeup community — one that isnt’ confined to pores and contours. Younger generations are pushing the boundaries of the typical male and female gender norms, and it’s even manifesting in popular social media trends.
The “masculine makeup” TikTok trend often features girls (or those female-identifying) highlighting some typically non-feminine features, such as sharp jawline contours à la Timothée Chalamet, messy downturned eyeliner, and thicker, bushier brows. Motifs like faux under eye dark circles or drawn-on freckles are also usually included, which have been praised for helping normalize common skin conditions.
The trend was seemingly started by TikToker Tatchi Ringsby, or @tringsby. Although beauty trends on TikTok come and go with the seasons, the popularization and embrace of gender-defying aesthetics has a more lasting implication.
Model and TikToker @lilyyyalice thinks the trend is great as it allows girls to experiment with the fluidity of gender through makeup.
“I found it exciting that more men have felt comfortable on the app to explore their self-expression by using makeup to make themselves look more feminine, and I think that by girls doing this trend, it shows support and acceptance,” Lily said.
Lily also attributed the look’s growth in popularity to Gen Z’s openness to examining the different spectrums of their gender identity on social media platforms through their appearance in hopes to create a more fun, accepting environment.
Rowdy Magazine makeup artist Grey Graham feels that this new attitude centered on blurring the lines of gendered stereotypes in order to leave them behind— especially outside of the queer community where that behavior has already been normalized for years— is a big step in the right direction in which anyone is able to present themselves how they please, and even a step further into not assuming how someone may identify according to their appearance.
“I know so many women are especially excited to see men start to implement these more feminine traits because it shows that they don’t have a fragile sense of masculinity, and it means that they do put effort into their own appearance and would allow them the freedom to also dress how they please”, Grey noted.
As someone who also enjoys staying up-to-date on hot topics in the beauty community, I loved seeing all of the different interpretations of what was considered “male” or “masculine” makeup by different TikTok creators. You can tell that many partakers of this trend felt inspired to present a style that wasn’t the run-of-the-mill feminine aesthetic, while others felt released from feeling as though they have to fit into a certain “look” to accept their appearance.
Another one of my personal favorite interpretations of “trying to look feminine the way boys do” is by makeup artist @abbyroberts.
Not only does she kill it with this look, her confidence speaks for itself when in her follow-up video she states how “powerful” she felt wearing it. At the end of the day, that’s how putting on makeup should make us all feel: empowered.
Samantha Redditt is an Online Writer at Rowdy Magazine. She enjoys long, romantic walks to the nearest coffee shop and roller skating to obscure Spotify playlists. You can reach her on Instagram at @samantharedditt for more information.