How to be a ‘real woman’ in the industry
Posted January 10, 2020 08:02:16A new study by a leading UK beauty therapist suggests women are being told to ‘look the part’ even if they are not good-looking.
The study, conducted by UK-based beauty school Beauty Academy, has been backed by UK beauty industry body Cosmetics UK and by a number of leading beauty companies including Lancome, L’Oreal, Urban Decay, Bobbi Brown, and Benefit.
The study found that many female beauty therapists have told female clients they need to be thin and have a thin waistline to ‘be successful’ in an industry where many women have been told they are ‘too thin’.
“It’s a big misconception that there’s something wrong with women who aren’t thin, because women are often judged for their appearance,” explained the study’s author, Sarah O’Connor.
I was once asked how many men are in the cosmetics industry, and my answer was zero. “
They are the ones who are the target of these negative messages.”
I was once asked how many men are in the cosmetics industry, and my answer was zero.
That’s because women have to be thinner than men for men to think they are good looking.”
Sarah added: “This is because the perception that beauty is sexy, attractive and sexy is a common one, and it is so powerful that even if you don’t look the part it is a constant reminder of who you are.”
Beauty therapists need to step up to the plate and talk about this with their clients, not just because of a lack of funding, but because we need to make sure we give women the best possible support.”
The study analysed the attitudes of over 2,000 female beauty therapy students from the UK’s top beauty schools and found that women who were told they were too thin were more likely to be judged by male colleagues for their beauty.
Women who were judged to be too thin also had a lower satisfaction rating with their career.
The findings also showed women who are judged to have ‘too much’ body hair are more likely than women who have less to feel ‘uncomfortable’ and less confident about their appearance.
In a statement, Cosmetics British chief executive Sue Foye said: “Cosmetics UK is proud to have partnered with Beauty Academy to carry out a study that provides the most rigorous and comprehensive evaluation of the work of our UK beauty therapists.”
It is a shame that so many women’s experiences are being ignored, and we hope that this study shows the importance of our profession.””
Our study shows that women are struggling to be seen as attractive, sexy and confident, and that we need the best-trained and experienced beauty therapists in the UK to help us address this problem.”
“It is a shame that so many women’s experiences are being ignored, and we hope that this study shows the importance of our profession.”
The report will be published in the British Journal of Psychiatry on Monday.
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