The Beauty Trade takes seriously the frequently maligned and trivialized beauty economy, just as it has become one of the most important worldwide industries. Through the lens of beauty products, practices, and ideas of youth in Guadalajara, Mexico, the book analyzes whether and how beauty norms are changing in relation to the globalizing beauty economy. It looks at who benefits and who loses from beauty globalization and what this means for gender norms among youth. Weaving together fascinating ethnographic research on beauty practices, global political economy, and feminist analysis, the book presents a feminist analysis of the global economy of beauty. Rather than a sign of frivolity, the beauty economy is intimately connected to youth's social and economic development. Cosmetic makeovers have become a modern rite of passage for girls, enabling social connections and differentiations, as well as entrepreneurial activities. The global beauty economy is a phenomenon generated by young people, mostly women, laboring in, teaching, and consuming beauty. Globalization in the beauty economy is a phenomenon propelled by youth, eager for belonging and originality, using every mechanism at their disposal to look good. Contrary to popular wisdom, globalization in the beauty economy is not homogenizing beauty standards to a Western ideal; it is diversifying beauty standards. The Beauty Trade explains how globalization, combined with youth's desires for uniqueness, is enabling the spread of a diversity of beauty cultures, including alternative visions of gender appropriate looks and behavior. "Beauty matters - to our self-identifications, social relations and life prospects; and beauty industries feature extensively in today's global economy. Yet in spite of its cultural and economic significance, this vast terrain of power is rarely examined, and rarer still from the ground up. McCracken's delightful, well executed and very informative study changes this. Read her book and ponder its intriguing insights regarding the agency of women and youth, constructions of gender and race, dynamics of cultural transformation, and how power operates in the global business of beauty." --V. Spike Peterson, Professor of International Relations, University of Arizona "A compelling and cogent work, Angela McCracken's The Beauty Trade breaks new ground. This book finds nuance in an industry marked by racism and sexism yet undergoing transformation spearheaded by tech-savvy youth. McCracken's insights contribute impressively to understanding gender in a changing global order." --James H. Mittelman, University Professor of International Affairs at American University and author of Contesting Global Order: Development, Global Governance, and Globalization"This book makes an exciting contribution to the literature on globalization of beauty and fashion practices, tensions between global and local production, and social reproduction. With a focus on the local beauty ideals of quinceaneras, The Beauty Trade offers a rich and impressive case for understanding how these ideals are enmeshed within systems of global political economy and gendered and racialized power." --Suzanne Bergeron, Professor of Women's Studies and Social Sciences, University of Michigan "