Hello to everyone reading this!
While this site name just debuted, you’ll probably notice that there is already a good amount of content here over a few years. That’s because this blog isn’t actually new! I’m writing this post to explain a bit why and to give the few subscribers I have a rundown of the changes and a chance to resubscribe!
First Things First: The Name Change
This new site is My BelleGalXE! (pronounced like belle galaxy) I chose that name 1.) because I have a penchant for weird names and 2.) I wanted the idea of beautiful things in the universe to be a jumping off point for this site. The original name of the site for those who aren’t familiar was JolieGZBella (also very weird and very cringe-worthy). I wanted to move on from that name for two reasons as well: 1.) “Seriously that’s the name I originally came up with? Ick!” and 2.) the inspiration behind it came from a place of fetishization which is something that I’ve had to come to terms with as a problem with my thought processes and change and that I don’t want to be associated with my blog going forward.
To explain that fully, I’ll need to give some context. When I first started this blog, I wrote almost exclusively about K-beauty (beauty products and skincare tips with a genesis in Korea). I had discovered K-beauty products as an extension of having fallen into the deep, dark abyss of K-pop. When I first discovered K-pop and the fandom culture surrounding it, I become obsessed! I was totally convinced that Korean music was better than “Western music”, I started using Korean slang I barely understood, started wearing circle lenses because that’s what cute Korean girls did, thought about wanting to date an Asian guy and only an Asian guy, even bleached and dyed my hair just to look like a K-pop star. Basically I turned into a Koreaboo (think Weeabo but obsessed with Korean pop culture instead of Japanese pop culture).
Now let me be clear, at its core there is nothing wrong with liking and wanting to know more about another culture. The problem comes when you create this fantasy notion about this culture and how great it is especially while throwing your own culture and all others under the bus. Fetishizing a culture often reduces it to its surface or stereotypical elements without acknowledging the background, history, or deeper elements within the culture and disrespects and minimizes the people to nothing more than an outlet of your own personal fascination. This is NOT okay!
The “GZB” in the original blog name is a stylized version of the Korean word 기집애 (gizibe) which loosely translates to “bad girl”. The stylized version was popularized by Korean singer CL in her song “The Baddest Female”. I had justified using it in the title because Korean is one of the three languages I have studied independently, and I had wanted to incorporate them all into the title. Upon reflection, I’ve realized it was more-so that I was trying to take on this persona and using a somewhat slang version of Korean is out of my lane. I’d like to apologize for that and any harm I might have caused with my other actions. I’m sorry and will work to be more aware and thoughtful continuing forward.
Korean Artist CL pictured above
That being said, it doesn’t mean I’ve stopped listening to K-pop, stopped trying to learn Korean, or will stop using K-beauty products. It just means that I’ve had to educate myself about how my interests and actions don’t exist in a social vacuum. Fetishizing cultures is harmful and overlaps with aspects of racism and often sexism. I’ve had to grow, change my negative thoughts and preconceived notions (many of which were rooted in anti-blackness), and work to move in a better direction. All of that is a good thing! 🙂
Changes to My Site Going Forward
Now for anyone who is still with me, let’s talk a little about my new direction going forward. I’ll reiterate that yes I will still be talking about and reviewing K-beauty products. That isn’t what the change was about. I do, however, want to make a concerted effort to try a wider range of products! I also want to do what I can to shine a spotlight on my community, so I’ll be doing more to incorporate reviews and spotlight posts for black-owned brands. I also want to spotlight more indie brands in general!
Another part of the change is that I want this to be a place where I can talk more freely about things that are important or beautiful to me. I’m saying that to leave room for doing more fashion posts or posts where I talk about my hair journey or even talk more about how I cope with chronic illness. In short, the center of this blog is going to remain beauty based but I don’t want to limit what I can talk about here either. If you have any suggestions for what you think would be interesting on the blog let me know!
Lastly, anyone subscribed to the old site is going to need to resubscribe if they still want updates. I know with some of the content changes, this site may not remain the same as previous expectations, so I don’t want to automatically opt anyone in. If you want to resubscribe or are new and want to subscribe sign up at the form on the right hand side of the page! You’ll have to scroll back up a little to see it!
If you’ve made it this far thanks for sticking around! I have a few fun new posts that I plan to be publishing, one on Monday and another in the next week or so, so be sure to check back! That’s about it for today! I really hope you like the new site! As always bisous!
TL/DR: my old name was Koreaboo cringe so I changed it; I’ll be talking about a wider range of stuff here; if you’re subscribe to the old site and still want updates, you’ll need to sign up again!