HAPPY 2018 everyone! This is my new year’s message to you, the last post of 2017. Thank you for faithfully reading my blog. I am approaching 100 followers, meaning that I soon won’t classify as a nano-blogger anymore. However, I have a few tricks up my sleeve, like writing thought-provoking and critical yet somewhat weird articles, so that any bloggerazzi followers get deterred. (Hope you get my sarcasm…)
But in all seriousness, there are a few trends which have emerged this year and will grow in the next one, such as bunkers and the so-called shade-inclusiveness, and I would like to share my research with you today.
TREND No 1: Bunkers are back in fashion, fueled by the end of the world sentiments.
I am serious, and not exaggerating, but let me explain:
If you know a bit about marketing you might also know about the “PESTEL” analysis. This handy tool looks at the macro-environment of a business and evaluates the Political, Economic, Social, Technological, Environmental and Legal developments in the world.
There is Euroscepticism, Anti-Trumpism, North Korea and seemingly endless conflicts in the Middle East.
Eco-conscious consumers have a hard time with sustainability, the environment, global warming, the meat-industry, over-fishing and pollution whilst the Paris Agreement takes a walk in the park (greenery courtesy of other nations).
In fact, fashion magazine InStyle predicts 2018 by means of the “Pinterest Index” (ok, I just made up this term, but they are in fact referring to the “Pinterest 100” which looks at saves to predict future trends) and comments: “[People will] be obsessing over diet-friendly food options like air fryers, which use hot air instead of oil to crisp food (saves for “air fryer” were up a whopping 1809 percent), and “souping,” which means eating puréed soups to reset your diet (saves for “souping” jumped 306 percent).“
Social injustice is on the rise in both developed and developing countries paired with inflation and currency fluctuations.
Big Data and Big Brother are the Orwellian future we are now living in and if that is a bit too heavy for you, just turn on some old The Simpsons episodes to see that they actually predicted some crazy things in a hilarious way.
Long analysis short, some people are not amused with the way things are going and are investing in their future, by means of bunkers. This PESTEL analysis thus gives competitive advantage to anyone in the bunker business. Never heard of such a thing? Read on!
Underground bunkers are not for everyone and mostly known from movies, the military and famous politicians, like JFK who had this bunker:
He might have already been sitting there, in the 1960s, when everyone held their breath during the Cuban Missile Crisis.
The History Channel recounts the story:
“During the Cuban Missile Crisis, leaders of the U.S. and the Soviet Union engaged in a tense, 13-day political and military standoff in October 1962 over the installation of nuclear-armed Soviet missiles on Cuba, just 90 miles from U.S. shores. […]
In a television broadcast on October 22, 1962, the president notified Americans about the presence of the missiles, explained his decision to enact the blockade and made it clear that the U.S. was prepared to use military force if necessary to neutralize this perceived threat to national security. Following this public declaration, people around the globe nervously waited for the Soviet response. Some Americans, fearing their country was on the brink of nuclear war, hoarded food and gas.
Despite the enormous tension, Soviet and American leaders found a way out of the impasse. During the crisis, the Americans and Soviets had exchanged letters and other communications, and on October 26, Khrushchev sent a message to Kennedy in which he offered to remove the Cuban missiles in exchange for a promise by U.S. leaders not to invade Cuba. The following day, the Soviet leader sent a letter proposing that the USSR would dismantle its missiles in Cuba if the Americans removed their missile installations in Turkey.”
Is it crisis time again?
According to The Intercept, the current crisis of North Korea has been compared to the Cuban one numerous times.
“For instance, Sebastian Gorka, deputy assistant to President Donald Trump, recently said, “This is analogous to the Cuban missile crisis.” and “according to Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., “It represents the greatest crisis … undoubtedly since the Cuban missile crisis.””
Companies like Atlas Survival Shelters have seen their business recently pick up, specifically after Trump was elected, who offer bunker units starting from $49K for personal use and go up to $1399999 if you want to accommodate 117 military personnel.
On their website, Atlas Survival Shelters declares:
“There is little difference between the bunkers made 50 years ago and the bunkers made today except the addition of modern interiors, NBC air filtration systems, Co2 scrubbers, generators, and high-tech electronics. There is no other shape other then round that will allow you to reach the depth underground that you need for maximum protection for your family and to allow the climate to be controlled underground.”
It is really alarming that so many people are worried about the future of our little planet. But on a lighter note, we still have fashion to keep us dreaming.
TREND No 2: Shade-inclusiveness
Another prediction of a trend by Pinterest Index are inclusive foundations:
“50 shades of you: A wider range of skin tones are showing up in new shade-inclusive foundations (saves for “complexion matching” +378%)”
Inclusiveness, be it regarding age, ethnicity, gender or skin-tone, is also on the rise (good news everyone!) and makes room for Fenty Beauty, eloquently named after the last name of the singer.
But is inclusiveness really such a 21st Century idea?
“While Rihanna deserves praise for catering to all skin tones, Fenty Beauty isn’t the first brand to offer an extensive foundation selection. More and more makeup brands are realizing that people don’t come in just eight shades.” comments The Fashion Spot.
Brands like good old MAC, L’Oreal true match, Bobbi Brown, Lancôme and Iman Cosmetics have been around much longer.
In fact, when Fenty Beauty’s founder Rhianna was only 6 years old, in 1994, Iman founded her cosmetics line due to the scarcity of choice. “Her beauty company created the first cosmetics and skincare collection designed for all Women with Skin of Color™. The IMAN brand philosophy holds that women with skin of color represent many races, cultures and ethnicities.” The website explains.
Another interesting aspect about Fenty Beauty is that it was the mega fashion conglomerate LVMH which stuck the deal with Rihanna paying her an estimated $10 mio (source from WWD) to launch the beauty brand. According to Lisa A La Mode and her very interesting investigation, Rihanna is not listed as the CEO of Fenty beauty but merely the creator and founder. And Forbes had this to say prior to the launch:
“While she may be the face of the company, Rihanna isn’t putting up the money to make Fenty Beauty a reality. The new venture is being launched by all things luxury powerhouse LVMH Moët Hennesy Louis Vuitton’s Kendo division, which was created specifically to work on celebrity-focused projects like Fenty Beauty. LVMH also owns the incredibly popular brand Sephora, which is one of the largest stores focused solely on all things makeup and beauty in the world. This fact means that Fenty Beauty won’t need to worry about distribution or getting into brick and mortar locations or popular online stores, which can sometimes kill a brand before it gets a chance to truly grow.”
(Note to self: It will be interesting to read the annual report by LVMH when it is released in the near future and see what has been written about their portfolio brand. The announcement of the launch was certainly mentioned in the quarterly results report of 2016.)
If we go back a few more decades and look once more to the 1960s (and a cue from Futurama) it’s Star Trek that pioneered it in a space ship, taking a multi-cultural crew to far-away galaxies where all sorts of races, genders, species and life forms were met. As Nancy Wang Yuet from the Huffington Post states: “Since its original debut on NBC in 1966, Star Trek has served as an inspiration for youth of color.” Indeed, together with Gene Roddenberry it pushed boundaries of interracial inclusiveness, at a time when segregation was the law in the country of origin of the show.
“When Gene Roddenberry brought Star Trek to television in 1966, he brought with it the first positive portrayal of a Japanese character in Helmsman Hikaru Sulu. In the midst of the Cold War, the show later introduced the Russian Ensign Pavel Chekov as the tactical officer. Roddenberry’s pilot for the show originally included actress Majel Barret as second-in-command, but the studio executives refused it. Roddenberry did successfully place Lieutenant Nyota Uhura on the bridge, a female African-American character whose surname comes from the Swahili word for “freedom.”(Ryan Soma, The Humanist, 2016).
For 2018, I wish for a year that is inclusive, embraces colours and ethnicities, and peace. It’s wonderful that this year’s Nobel Peace Prize went to ICAN, an organization that works against the weapons, featuring a much honoured “Hibakusha” (survivor of Hiroshima/ Nagasaki bombing) on stage.
If we can produce make-up that acknowledges 40 different colours of different humans, why can’t we acknowledge a peaceful life for all of them?
So my New Years message to you is: “When you buy a bottle of diverse make up, do keep a diverse mind!”
Happy holidays, whatever you do or do not celebrate (Hannukah, Kwanzaa, Western Christmas Eastern Christmas, Festivus etc) and happy 2018 and peace to the world!