Witches of today
Though now fully democratized and included in popular practices, witchcraft was, until recently, considered a dangerous art that summoned evil forces. A dark and uncomfortable universe that, today, is evolving towards an image that’s more feminist and kind.
In her bestseller “Sorcières: La Puissance Invaincue des Femmes” (Witches: the undefeated power of women), Mona Chollet demonstrates that feminism and witchcraft have always been closely linked, enduring their status of victim and rebellious woman. A strong bond that encourages current generations to restore the image of these independent and proud women.
Inspired by the brujas, witches from the Caribbean and Latin America, new Gurus are emerging. Stylist, foodistas, yogis, they find in these ancestral practices a way to bring a dose of magic into a daily existence that’s sometimes too anchored in reality.
Gabriela Herstik, a fashion writer (who collaborated with Nylon, ID and Broadly, among others), defines herself as a fashion alchemist and witch who, through her book “Inner Witch: A modern Guide to Ancient Craft” gives the keys to living one’s witchcraft on a daily basis. Focused on the Millennial generation, she invites readers to choose their clothing according to their daily mantra, a pragmatic and glamorous vision of witchcraft that tends to restore confidence to women.
Thanks to these new figureheads of the movement, the new witchcraft takes a very “lifestyle” approach. At Danza Medicina, sacred dances are used to restore strength and reconnect individuals and the supernatural, a practice similar to Shamans. New practices that may seem mystical but which find a more popular interpretation through social networks, notably at @TheHoodWitch, a young street witch in Los Angeles who has been able to balance the practice of tarot reading and style in her daily life. Today, with almost 400K followers, she commercializes her esoteric lifestyle through her shop.
Beauty brands are also exploring the terrain of mysticism more and more. By affirming benefits beyond the aesthetic aspect, new brands advocate solutions to open the chakras, such as Moon Juice's Spirit Dust or MoonDeli's Meditation Tonic. Others return to ancient grimoires and recipes from shamans and other gurus to heal the ills of the body and mind. A more “possessed” version of the classic Herbalist found especially in the Ayurvedic products of Sun Potion or Danchu medicine.
Priestesses and gurus
What aesthetic would the witch have without her historical representations? The modern image of the witch finds a certain resonance in many aesthetic expressions: antique, medieval, baroque or Victorian, each of these styles adds a sartorial signature which fashion has managed to seize.
The Pulsions theme explores very bestial baroque expression, harkening back to Animorphic priestesses, such as the mythical Medusa, whose bodies mutated between human and animal members. Humans as chimeras or fauns of modern times that fashion has interpreted and promoted, such as in Y-Project where XXL boots are reminiscent of faun hoofs.
The “Heavenly Bodies” exhibition at the MET Museum in New York traces the love story between religious clothing and fashion. Very closely connected to the Catholic religion, there is a connection between these formal expressions and the attitudes of the new Instagram witches: dramatic attitudes and the preponderance of dense colors.
Ultimately, it’s through the Hindu aesthetic that the 2019 priestess expresses herself most. Influenced by the explosion of “Kundalini” gurus, fashion has captured the entire essence of the typical panoply of the spiritual guide, like Paco Rabanne with its Baroque-tinged New Age expression.
Our daily life shows that esotericism and mysticism are the new avenues of self-liberation. Let's get ready to release our inner impulses!