Millennial pink: gender, feminism and marketing. A critical Analysis of a color trend

  • Kévin Bideaux Université Paris, Centre Français de la Couleur
Keywords: Millennial pink, Gender marketing, Femvertising, Queer marketing, Color trend, Color symbolism

Abstract

The “millennial pink” refers to a specific range of pink shades which became widely popular towards the end of the year 2015. This trend stormed both the world of fashion and the world of design, and was widely spread through social networks and especially on Instagram.  The millennial pink was named after its users — a generation of young people born between 1980 and 2000 — the so-called “millennial generation,” whose main feature is their knowledge of new technology and their extensive use of the internet.
Pink but not really, millennial pink could be described as almost pink. Since it is not one color but a wide range of pale pink, the most accurate description would be pinkish beige, or even salmon. Above all, millennial pink pretends to bear a meaningful message: this color aims at disassociating itself from the feminine symbolism usually attached to the pink color, and pretending to be a “genderless color.”
I intend to analyze this trend through the lens of gender studies, as it appears that millennial pink, far from being genderless, is actually a new form of gendered marketing. Indeed, the use of feminist concepts (empowerment, body-positivism) and the use of a strategy based on the association of so-called masculine images with a so-called feminine color allows marketers to seduce the younger generation, seen as consumers sensitive to feminism as well as queer theories. 

Author Biography

Kévin Bideaux, Université Paris, Centre Français de la Couleur

Kévin Bideaux is a PhD candidate in gender studies and art at the University of Paris 8, and a visual artist. He conducts research on the history of the color pink and its symbolism of femininity, sexuality and homosexuality, as well as on its use by visual culture. He is a member of the Centre Français de la Couleur.

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Published
2019-07-02
How to Cite
Bideaux, K. (2019) “Millennial pink: gender, feminism and marketing. A critical Analysis of a color trend”, Cultura e Scienza del Colore - Color Culture and Science, 11(01), pp. 82-89. doi: 10.23738/CCSJ.110110.
Section
Papers