New Masculinity in Korean Cosmetics Advertisements on Social Media Pages

Authors: Didin Samsudin (Korean Education Study Program, Universitas Pendidikan Indonesia)
Yulianeta (Department of Indonesian Language and Literature Education, Universitas Pendidikan Indonesia)
Risa Triarisanti (Korean Education Study Program, Universitas Pendidikan Indonesia)
Arif Husein Lubis (Korean Education Study Program, Universitas Pendidikan Indonesia)
Speakers: Didin Samsudin, Yulianeta, Risa Triarisanti, Arif Husein Lubis
Topic: Language, Gender, Sexuality
The (SCOPUS / ISI) SOAS GLOCAL CALA 2022 General Session


Both masculine and feminine values are social constructs dividing the roles between men and women into certain values ​​of appropriateness. What is considered masculine value is, in truth, found in men just as femininity in women. Through social construct, masculine values ​​are contrasted and separated in such a way that what is considered masculine means not feminine and vice versa. In its development, masculinity is now being promoted in Korean cosmetics advertisements. Men cosmetics product advertisements usually show masculinity that are different from the dominant masculinity values ​​displayed by the media. The advertisements usually present feminine men as masculine men. It is also found in Korean cosmetic products for men. The aim of this study is to determine the representation of masculinity in Korean men cosmetic products advertisements on social media pages. This study uses a qualitative descriptive method for analyzing signs in visual and language or textual forms using Roland Barthes’ Semiotics theory to explore and find the representations of masculinity. The results showed that the representation of masculinity in the advertisements is dominated by a new form of masculinity, namely metrosexual masculinity defined by a man obsessing about the appearance and health of his skin.


Allen, G. (2003). Roland Barthes. London: Routledge.

Barthes, R. (2002). S/Z. New York: Blackwell Publishing.
Connell, R. (1995). Masculinities. Cambridge: Polity.
Connell, R. (2000). The Man and The Boys. Berkeley: University of California Press.
Danesi, M. (2007). The Quest for Meaning: A Guide to Semiotic Theory and Practice. Toronto: University of Toronto Press.
Fathinah, Ezzah. (2017). New Masculinity In Korean Cosmetic Advertising:  Etude And Tonymoly, 9 (2). 213-228.
Johansen, J. D., & Larsen, E. S. (2004). Signs in Use: An Introduction to Semiotics. New York: Routledge.
Kim, Jeong Woo. (2015). 광고 언어. Republic of Korea: Communication Books.
McQuillan, M. (2002). The Narrative Reader. The Narrative Reader. New York: Routledge.
Merriam, S.B. and Grenier, S.B. (2019). Qualitative Research in Practice. San Fransisco: Wiley.
Sari, Herninda Cintia Kemala. (2020). Representasi Maskulinitas Dalam Iklan Garnier Men Versi Joe Taslim Dan Chico Jeriko. Jurnal Ilmiah Ilmu Linguistik, 2 (1). 34-46.
Pilcher, dkk. (2017). Key Concept in Gender Studies 2nd Edition. London : SAGE Publications.

Keywords: Advertisement, cosmetics, masculinity, Roland Barthes, semiotics