International Women’s Day 2021

A day of reckoning for the outdated gender roles that resurfaced in the pandemic

Maria Healy

It’s International Women’s Day! The one day of the year where we are all actively encouraged to celebrate women’s incredible traits and offerings to the world. Today we remember the incredible trailblazers who have paved the way for equality across all genders, and we connect to inspirational movements that have enabled us to be empowered in ways that women of the past were not.

Yet in 2020, we saw the harrowing consequences that COVID had on women’s roles within the household. Some of us found ourselves back in the 1950s; many women who were furloughed have not gone back to work and homeschooling became the responsibility of most mothers. We use this day this year to talk about these difficult patterns and how to resolve them.

Over the past year, we have seen that women and girls have overwhelmingly taken on the majority of work in the home, whilst juggling jobs, in comparison to their male counterparts. The statistics have been staggering, showing that 66% of girls and young women have been taking on extra duties in the home, compared to just 31% of young men. It’s estimated that women now work over three hours of unpaid labour when compared to every men’s hour of work. It’s safe to say the argument over the value of house labour has become an emotional subject for many, and we have even seen the courts placing a monetary value on housework. In China, a husband has recently had to pay out for his wife in their divorce settlement for the amount of time she spent in managing housekeeping and childcare. Doesn’t is feel enraging when our ‘multi-tasking’ skills are used against us?

It is incredibly important to remind our society that women are equal, especially in these times. The majority of households nowadays are dependent on two incomes, and the ‘male breadwinner’ archetype has been redundant for decades. Our society now has freedoms that in some parts of the world, some people can still only dream of. How many households can even say they are made up of the husband, wife and 2.4 kids these days? So why have these outdated societal structures snuck back onto the scene in the past year? More importantly, how can we confront this?

Go on strike!

If you can resonate with the above, go on strike for the day! Remind your family of the incredible value you add to the household and let them take the reins for once...they will be ok! Whilst you have your feet up, why not read a book? Cathy Newman’s Bloody Brilliant Women would be a great starting point. If the above doesn’t sound quite like your own situation, get a takeaway and a bottle of wine…you deserve it.

Celebrate your role models

And no, I’m not talking about Beyoncé. Give your best gal pal or closest woman relative a call, and tell them you love them. Tell them why you think they are so bloody brilliant. Better yet, shout them out on our Instagram! Tell US why your women role models are fabulous and share their story. We will be posting a blog about some of your responses next week so be sure to get involved!

Remember your value

Our industry is incredible in making ourselves feel fabulous, so make the effort today for YOU! Beauty isn’t just skin deep, and we reflect our strengths in how we show ourselves to the world. But blimey, that perfect red lippy doesn’t half make us smile when we catch our reflection in the mirror. Have a look through our tutorials, get some inspiration, and go seize the day. Why not send us a snap whilst you’re at it and we will add you to our stories!

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