chapter  4
48 Pages

Different tropes for different folks—advertising and face-fixing

The cosmetics industry has grown to a multibillion-dollar branding competition conducted in the arenas of magazines, television, the Internet, outdoor and other public displays, shopping malls, and convenience and drug stores from coast to coast. In the culture of appearance, cosmetics promise enhancement, repair, and transformation. Advertising presents the terms of these promises through verbal and visual discourse. Most women know that you can’t find a fashion or lifestyle magazine that is not filled with ads for cosmetic productslipstick, face make-up, eye shadow and liners and lotions galore. In 2003, the global beauty industry topped $160 billion, with skin care accounting for $24 billion, make-up $18 billion, and hair care $38 billion (Pots of promise, 2003). Although men have been less of a target, the cosmetics industry is slowly paving an inroad to this consumer market through new products advertised in distinctly masculine ways.