A women wearing a traditional Mexican pattern dress . Source:Aliexpress
By Valeria Ramirez
The new and latest trend of 2017 is taking and profiting on culture’s traditional clothing that many companies and fashion designers are being praised for as their “new” and “innovative” ideas. Many of these ideas are taken from Mexico’s indigenous tribes and Native Americans just for the sake of fashion. In what world is it okay to use one’s culture and profiting it from it for a high amount of money? Recently I saw Toms was selling a pair of huaraches for the low price of $129. You can get the exact pair in Mexico, which are handmade by the person selling them, for around 80 pesos, in dollars that are roughly $4.
So, Toms is making 30 times the amount for the original. My problem with this is that when buying the original your helping the family and appreciating the work that the seller is putting out. While Toms is mass producing a product that can be easily made for a profit. This type of style of sandal is a traditional staple in Mexican culture that has ties with the indigenous culture of Mexico. Toms is not the only company that is guilty of this capitalistic fraud, other stores such as Urban Outfitters and Victoria’s Secret have been using Native American culture to make a profit. These corporations tailor to an audience where they prefer a more “indie” type of style.
Every year around Halloween time, we inevitably see articles like this and this one making fun of the year’s most ridiculous sexy Halloween costumes. Admittedly, these are pretty hilarious. A few real issues with female Halloween costumes is the fact that more often than not, women are given few choices when trying to pick out a Halloween costume that isn’t “sexy” and the sexualization of costumes that are made for young girls. Apart from the issues specific to female costumes, there’s also the ever-persistent issue of cultural appropriation with Halloween costumes.
Although these are just a few of the many issues with Halloween costumes in current society, Halloween can be fun. I’ve always thought of Halloween as a time to dress up as someone or something you’ve always wanted to be.
Back in 2011, Jenna Marbles made a video titled, “Sluts on Halloween”. This is one of my favorite videos because instead of insulting the women who choose to wear “slutty” costumes, Jenna calls for women to quit insulting each other and, instead, compliment each other.