By Marissa Rotolo
Samuel Jean Butler / Wix.com
Not a color, not a construct to define gender identity, not a means to stereotype. A statement. A hidden power. A means to reclaim an overused stereotype. Pink is powerful, not weak. Fashion has reclaimed what pink represents and how it can empower instead of generalize. For so long pink was one dimensional; canceling out intellect for fashion, or vice versa. In recent history, we have seen women reclaim that stereotype. Instead of one dimensional, we have seen the color’s many layers and representation depth.
Valentino released their monochrome pink collection in Fall 2022 by Pierpaolo Piccioli. He explains, “The pink-out is an experimental yet deeply human gesture that enhances individuality, capturing values and feelings.” Pink is defined by its demand for attention and the unequivocal qualities of confidence. The presence of pink is hardly the absence of depth because it requires attention, and with attention comes conviction. The color is rooted in doubt and misjudgment which leaves room to prove expectations wrong. It is frank and unapologetic.
Elle Woods is a prime example of how pink can mean beauty and brains. In “Legally Blonde” protagonist Elle Woods never compromises her passions to gain the respect of others. She uses the color to express herself and the individuality she shamelessly possesses. Her embracement of the color shows that one doesn’t need to compromise aspects of oneself to appeal to politics or assumptions. She lets her style procede her, so that her intellect can speak for itself. The boldness sets her apart from the crowd and is a symbol of individuality that goes beyond the surface. Its juxtaposition is a direct contrast of what people expect versus what the reality is, and there is profound power in that.
Pink has transformed its label and has cultivated the modern day “girl boss” that has become popular within Gen-Z. The strength in taking a stereotype and recycling it to make it empowering is something that demands to be noticed.