the backbone of illumine

Recently, the creators have conducted a study on how the Philippines’ consumption of Korean media has altered or changed Filipino womens’ perception on beauty. Seeing as Korean culture has become such a big phenomenon in the Philippines especially, we decided to focus on this as our main topic and delved deeper into how it impacted the country, particularly in terms of beauty standards and ideals.

With the Philippines being colonized by Western countries for a long period of time in the past, it was natural for Filipinos to have adopted cultures from and to have gotten influenced by Western countries, in the form of speech, actions, mannerisms, and preferences. This is especially evident with the sensationalization of skin-whitening products or fairer skin tones in general in a country where natives are naturally dark-skinned. This can also be said with the style of makeup that many Filipino women prefer which creates the illusion of a sharper bone structure. These influences have then been carried on from generation to generation and have evolved to become the ideal standard of beauty in the Philippines.

With beauty being a lot more demanding and exclusive in Korean culture in comparison to Western beauty, we wanted to see how this translated into Filipino culture through multiple interviews with different Filipino women that have consumed Korean media for a long period of time. Through this, the creators were able to determine that, Korean media certainly influenced a change in style and a development of healthy habits. The participants mentioned that Korean media had made them regard beauty as something necessary and important but not to the point where it would negatively impact their lives. It has made them more interested in skin care and more appreciative of their own features as Filipino women and now prefer to use a lighter amount of makeup that would enhance these features.

These results have inspired this project in a way that we wanted to convey the message that as long as you are happy and aren't doing anything harmful towards yourself or others then by all means, do what you like. You do not have to conform to any beauty standards because it is what most people prefer but instead, do what you think suits you and makes you comfortable.

At the same time, the creators found it necessary to help Filipino women who find themselves unconsciously seeking validation in order to truly feel good about themselves, learn to know and accept that they are beautiful and provide them with support and reassurance. Alongside anti-colorism and morena/moreno movements, it is also necessary to guide Filipino women through their journey of self-love and acceptance by teaching them more about their skin and their features and how best to take care of it. Given that there aren't many existing tools to help Filipino women understand and love their natural features, the creators thought that creating this special project will do just that.