Yeah, I know, stating the obvious, but in fact, even for someone of Chinese ethnicity, I am decidedly not on the pale end of the spectrum. And every time I flip open a fashion magazine here in America or visit my home city of Beijing, decked out with all its skin-lightening billboards, I am reminded that because of my skin tone, the world wants me to change.
Previously referenced as “the Snow White complex,” the pressure to be white has overtaken most of the world as an indisputable standard of beauty, despite the fact that every standard of beauty we try to mold ourselves to is culturally constructed.
In Asia and India, skin lightening has soared into popularity thanks to …
Dear Anthropologie (and all other stores pertaining to this issue),
I love your store. I love the scent when you walk in, the feel of the material, and the creative way everything is displayed. I love the candles, the sweaters, the doorknobs, the dresses, the high-heels, the many patterns, and the painted dishes. I love getting the catalog in the mail and dreaming about a reality in which I, too, am able to pitch my tent in the tide of the Bahamas, just because it would be a beautiful sight.
I am not complaining because I am one of those curvy, big-bosomed women who never see anyone their size in a magazine. I am a tall, petite young girl who usually fits in a size small, does …
the infamous and ever-horrible "celebrity bikini gallery"
As a little project, I recently decided to compile the gender presentation as depicted in the headlines on various popular ‘news’ websites over 3 days. Having rolled my eyes so strenuously as to pop several blood vessels at the ridiculous scandals I’m subjected to each time I checked my email, I decided to monitor sites like AOL, Yahoo, and MSN News to dissect how they depict famous women.
AOL’s headlines regarding famous women:
“Brittany Spears flaunts assets”
“See what (Kate Middleton’s sister) Pippa’s wearing at Wimbledon”
“Who’s the British beauty showing off her armpits?” (No, I’m not kidding…)
“Miley Cyrus wears daring LBD”
“Megan shows off baby bump in bikini” – (Translation: “show off” = wearing a biking while pregnant …
I don’t have a diagnosed eating disorder and that makes me sad. That might sound like a strange thing to say, but what I mean is that I think it’s wrong that my daily obsession with counting calories, my attempts to drink copious amounts of green tea because it supposedly speeds up your metabolism, and my complete inability to forget about my weight is pretty much considered normal. Wikipedia informs me that “Eating disorders refer to a group of conditions defined by abnormal eating habits that may involve either insufficient or excessive food intake to the detriment of an individual’s physical and mental health.”
I don’t fit into this category because I never fell ill, no one ever commented that my weight …
Why The Media Assault on Ashley Judd Is Larger Than A “Puffy Face”
Ashley Judd is awesome.
A couple days ago, I, like millions of other college students across the country, logged on to Facebook as a pathetic attempt at procrastination. I expected to flip through some of my friends’ newly posted pictures, maybe like somebody’s status– the usual – but instead was faced with something extraordinary. My newsfeed was inundated with links to an article written by Ashley Judd—the kind of article that, as a young feminist, I have been waiting to read for a very long time.
In response to a swell of criticism regarding her “puffy” appearance, or what feminist blog Jezebel has cleverly titled “Judd-puff-maggedon 2012,” Judd recently penned an article for The Daily Beast, calling out the media for what she saw as “pointedly nasty, …
The Flip Side of the Coin, or Just Because I’m Skinny Doesn’t Mean I Have An Eating Disorder
let's remember that beauty at any size really means beauty at ANY size
It’s a common presumption in our society that if you’re female, tall and skinny, you have it all. You are the perfect woman: you have the attributes of a high fashion model, and you should be extremely self-confident because you have it made. The truth, however, is much different.
When I was younger, I was bullied for five years because of my height and weight. “Oh they’re just jealous because you’re tall and skinny,” my well-meaning family members would say. “They just want to be like you.” But they didn’t want to be like me, because I was miserable beyond belief and the bullying was making me pick out tiny little things about myself that I hated. …
Retouching photographs of models in magazines and newspapers has been a point of controversy in the publishing industry ever since technology like Photoshop has become readily available. Most magazines, especially ones dedicated to fashion and/or celebrity stalking, have no qualms about retouching “imperfect” pictures. I think this practice is absolutely reprehensible.
There are instances when it’s appropriate to retouch photograph. For example, if a person in a photograph has red eye or some stray hairs, or the lighting isn’t good, or if there’s some other imperfection that doesn’t change the concept of the picture to a ridiculous degree, I don’t see a problem with that. I do take issue with pictures retouched to the point that the original subject is unrecognizable or completely changed, especially …