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The ‘Bimbo’ Aesthetic: How It Became A Way Of Empowerment

"It is actually about being hot and beautiful, believing you’re hot and beautiful and, most of all, feeling hot and beautiful without overthinking it."

Model: @Mari⁠ Makeup Artist: @vladastylist⁠ Photographer: @iliainenanastasia⁠ Via @officialkavyar

The term bimbo has traditionally been used to identify a woman that was ‘nothing but beautiful’, a word to define the old ‘pretty and dumb’ concept, and it was mostly used towards young women. Even though the word bimbo was originally created to define a stupid man, it was somewhere around the 80s when its popularity turned it into a sexist term used to insult, objectify and demean women - as the world usually finds a way to. But, since the middle of 2022, the term has re-emerged and faced a new dawn, with people - specially young women - reframing, and reclaiming, the term as something unapologetically their own, and we’re loving to see how this is happening.

Model: @jenaya.ray⁠ Photographer/Retoucher/Creative Director: @the_ugly_duckling_images⁠ Via @officialkavyar

The term ‘bimbofication’, first used and popularized by Griffin Maxwell Brooks, a fashion content creator, has a big influence on the comeback of the word ‘bimbo’ as a way of claiming yourself. That claim comes in how you express, how you act, what you wear and everything that makes you unique and special - a specific, hard definition is yet to be constructed, but it is absolutely about reclaiming your own form of expression. Something very important about the term in this new take, is that it is now to be used by marginalized groups and for marginalized people, specially the ones that are feminine, and, more than ever, it is not for the male gaze - it’s quite the opposite. It is also important to say that there is no right or wrong way to be a bimbo, so anyone can do it as they please, and the online community seems to agree, specially on TikTok - of course. The hashtag #bimbofication has over 100 million views on TikTok while #bimbo has over 2 billion views, and it even gained its own ‘core’, so yes, bimbocore is a thing!

Model: @jenaya.ray⁠ Photographer/Retoucher/Creative Director: @the_ugly_duckling_images⁠ Via @officialkavyar

The Bimbocore aesthetic, created by content creators on TikTok, is mostly centered around the color pink - really anything in pink goes, being it clothes, accessories and even pink hair - glittery garments and makeup, 2000’s photos for inspiration pop culture, such as the movies Clueless, Legally Blonde, Mean Girls, House Bunny and Jennifer’s Body, pop stars like Paris Hilton and Britney Spears - and there’s no way you don’t love at least one of those. Punk or/and rock music also appears to be popular, but it has to coe with a bad girl theme and pink things added to it, so think Girlfriend and Hello Kitty by Avril Lavigne. As for the fashion for the bimbo style, it is about radical body positivity, sexuality and a very specific, doll-like look, so a lot of mini skirts, crop tops, cut outs, tight dresses and more. The makeup is set on heavy eyeliner, vibrant eye makeup - even better if it comes in shades of pink - big, really big lashes and lips that are even shiny and pink or full and red. Special mention to the high heels!

Model: @Mari⁠ Makeup Artist: @vladastylist⁠ Photographer: @iliainenanastasia⁠ Via @officialkavyar

As the word was first used to describe them, a bimbo is still usually associated with the ‘dumb blonde’ concept, in a very sexist way. But as we are reclaiming it, it is now for everyone, and self describing as a bimbo makes you part of a movement that includes the queen community and hyperfemininity, so much that the people who identify with it can even call themselves, bi-mbos, thembos and himbos, describing bissexual people, non-binaries and feminine man, respectively - or for anyone in the queer community who personally identifies with it. The bimbofication is really not that complicated, it is actually about being hot and beautiful, believing you’re hot and beautiful and, most of all, feeling hot and beautiful without overthinking it.

If you really think about it in a deeper way, the bimbofication is actually a journey of self love - as much as that idea seems like a saturated, overused one. It is a little different when combined with the bimbo aesthetic, as it becomes about being completely comfortable being yourself, not ashamed of being feminine and sexual. It requires a lot more than y2k style, bright pink color and sparkly clothes, but a lot of emotional intelligence, as it is not always easy to put yourself first and don’t care about what people will think and say about you - and believe me, they will. People are still stuck on the ‘dumb’ concept of being a bimbo, not accepting how the word has been reclaimed as something completely different, so they will look at it in a very demeaning way - but that’s really their problem.

Model: @Mari⁠ Makeup Artist: @vladastylist⁠ Photographer: @iliainenanastasia⁠ Via @officialkavyar

The internet has exploded with an appreciation for the bimbo icons, being them old, classic ones such as Marilyn Monroe and Pamela Anderson, vintage ones like 2000’s Paris Hilton, Megan Fox and Lindsay Lohan, or new ones like the TikTok star Chrissy Chlapecka. They are now seen as cultural icons, seen by a lot more than by their beauty and looks, but by their career, history and talent on top of that - they’re not considered less pretty now, just a lot more than that. So we can say that the bimbo movement is a great thing for women in theory, and the practice has not shown big problems for now, but there is still a long way to go in regards to feminism - specially when we talk intersectional feminism and the inclusion of people of color. There’s really no right specific way to be a bimbo, and it can be adapted to all aesthetics and subcultures - we’ve seen cottagecore bimbos, goth bimbos and a lot more, and they all share one thing in common: creativity and self expression.

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