A Debate of Beauty Standards
Zara, the Spanish fashion brand, launched a lipstick campaign featuring unretouched images of 25-year old Li Jingwen showcasing her freckles. Posted on Weibo, a Chinese social platform, the advertisement immediately sparked a debate on the decision to use the model and even goes as far as questioning Zara’s intention.
Campaigns commonly follow the current standards of beauty of the country they are based in. Since Zara’s headquarters are in Spain, what casting directors may be looking for would have been different than what is common in China.
On the site, which can be compared to Twitter, multiple users were offended that the campaign did not reflect Chinese beauty standards. They went on to comment on the decision saying, "Sorry, we Asian women don't have freckles. Only a few of us do.” One user even questioned if Zara was “trying to uglify Asians.”
While many were upset with the campaign, there are also others who see the beauty in the campaign which is a part of a wonderful movement to stop retouching and altering images. With such so many variations in beauty standards around the world, it can be difficult to abide by every constructed rule. But as others have commented about the campaign, “Her confidence is beautiful" and that should be globally acknowledged.