Can ‘unapproachable’ makeup work as a man repellent?

The hack
Does “unapproachable” makeup scare men off?

The test
With over 124m views on TikTok, the unapproachable makeup trend has become a firm gen Z favourite. The brief seems to be: “Looking so good they’re too scared to approach you,” according to TikToker Megi Hebeja – the “they” in question being men.

So how does this trend manifest? Many of the looks lean into bold eye makeup, strong liner and bleached brows – trends that aren’t seen as traditionally “pretty” – so I follow that brief. I do this by creating a bold purple eye, using Danessa Myricks Twin Flames in Adore U (£24), layering on black liner and finishing by faking bleached brows by patting my concealer on them, and powdering them to set.

Of course, it is worth stating that not all men are predatory. But what this trend could be tapping into is the ongoing issues with street harassment; ONS data suggests that 24,000 women are harassed daily in the UK, despite tougher legislation being put in place in 2022.

The verdict
If a makeup look makes you feel safer, I fully back it. I also fully back wearing makeup purely for self expression, so perhaps this “man repeller” trend is a wider call to detach beauty standards from the male gaze, too.

The Guardian

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