Why Gen Z are Rejecting ‘Girlboss’ Culture

Women (in the West) are aspiring to a “softer life”, away from that of “mid-2000s ‘girlboss’ hustle culture”.

Illustration insert: despardes.com

Writes Julia O’Driscoll in The Week: “The girlboss era is decidedly over,” Vanity Fair said last year. And this reported demise has coincided with a growing trend of young women ditching their careers for more leisurely pursuits.

Videos of so-called stay-at-home girlfriends (SAHGs) “narrating their day while twinkly music plays in the background” are gaining millions of views on social media, said Cosmopolitan. But “the life of a SAHG is risky, to say the least”. 

The good

TikTok shows SAHGs “puttering around modern high-rise apartments, pushing Dyson vacuums and spoiling small dogs”, said Rory Satran in The Wall Street Journal. “They talk slowly” and appear “unbothered”. These women are aspiring to a “softer life”, away from that of “mid-2000s ‘girlboss’ hustle culture”.

SAHGs are “the influencer community’s true prophets of female ease”, said The Washington Post‘s Monica Heese. Unlike the “tradwife” – a “modern coinage for a TikTok-fluent married woman who keeps house, extols ‘traditional’ values and yields to her husband” – the SAHG set’s motto is “I dream of feminine leisure”.

These women’s days are packed with “elaborate skin, fitness and food routines that keep their bodies beautiful and their lives serene”, not just for their own pleasure but also to charm their boyfriends, “who are, after all, funding the whole shebang”.

Yet a “common thread” ties SAHGs and tradwives together: “the concept that liberation is overrated”. Today, “women are allowed to have successful careers”, but the amount of work it takes to run a household hasn’t decreased. And when that domestic burden still disproportionately falls on women, “who wouldn’t dream of feminine leisure?”

More here.

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