Pop-Culture | Posted by Becka W on 07/5/2011

The Enigma of the Bra

Fashion is pain, and pain is beauty. Right?

I complimented a friend on a new sundress recently, and she thanked me and then showed me her clever solution to the dress’ lacy strap area – she put a scarf on to hide her bra peeking through. As cute as the ensemble was, there was that voice at the back of my head saying – why? Why does my friend have to have a whole other accessory in order to accomplish wearing a dress?

We all have outfits like this. I have 3 or 4 gorgeous dresses where a tank top is required underneath to ensure classy cleavage. 3 pairs of adorable heels where I need to make sure I’m wearing a band-aid on my heel. They’re small little sacrifices – …

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Feminism | Posted by Alexa S on 06/8/2011

Breaking My Rules

For over a year not very long ago, I had a plethora of very strange rules for myself to follow. I could only eat certain things at certain times. I had numbers that dictated my actions, numbers of calories and daily intake percentages and pounds. It was a suffocating process; luckily, I never followed my regulations enough for it to impact my health. Still, it affected my mind quite a bit.

Perhaps more damaging to my self-esteem was my body image. Unlike the majority of the population, especially teenagers, I really don’t enjoy food very much. This made any disordered eating-type behaviors extremely easy for me.

Most of my friends are exceptionally thin, as in magazine-ad thin. Most of them are athletic and/or naturally thin; as far as I know, …

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Pop-Culture | Posted by Julie Z on 05/7/2011

Saturday Vids: Life Size Barbie

I remember hearing the truth about Barbie when I was in Middle School. I have no idea what the context was, but I remember feeling shocked at the fact that if Barbie were real, she’d have a 39-inch bust, an 18-inch waist and 33-inch hips. Of course, it’s hard to convert those measurements directly to a mental image, but it’s safe to assume that it’s pretty unattainable.

But “easy enough” to imagine wasn’t good enough for college student Galia Slayen. In honor of Eating Disorders Awareness Week, Galia recently decided to create a real, life size Barbie, based on these measurements. Watch her tell her story in this week’s Saturday Vid:

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Feminism, Pop-Culture | Posted by Julie Z on 04/29/2011

Endangered Species Summit: Our Generation and Body Image

The Endangered Species Summit – an international movement focused on improving the way women around the world view and treat their bodies, in the media and beyond – took place last month. There were branches in London, Buenos Aires, Melbourne, Sao Paul and New York. I was lucky enough to be involved with the New York branch thanks to the incomparable Courtney Martin, who is a goddess (and who flawlessly planned the NYC summit). I had the daunting task of representing our generation on the Intergenerational Panel, which also included such amazing women as Jean Kilbourne, Erica Watson and Rachel Simmons. So, you know. No pressure or anything.

Needless to say, it was an incredible experience, but more than talking about my impressions, I figured I’d share …

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Feminism | Posted by Lindsey T on 02/22/2011

Paris Gyms: Enter At Your Own Risk

From a very young age my mother instilled in me a certain logic, if you can call it that. There were clothes that could be worn to school, to friends houses, out to dinner and to events and then there were what she called “play clothes” – clothes for lounging around the house, playing outside or engaging in any kind of athletic activity. The two were not to overlap. From the moment I would get home from school I was told to go upstairs and change into my play clothes before doing anything else. I never found this to be unusual since the only time I would see my mother in anything but her play clothes (jeans, a sweatshirt and slippers) was when she would run errands or go out …

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Feminism | Posted by Julie Z on 02/16/2011

Masculinity: From A Feminine Perspective

It pains me a little bit to say this, but I have to admit it. I’m kind of a hypocrite. I’ve spent over a year on this blog exploring most every facet of being a teen girl in this culture through a feminist lens. I’ve bitched (and rightfully so) about how there’s still a shit ton of sexism out there and how we still need to fight for equality, but I never really mentioned the guys.

While I’ve always supported men in the feminist movement, and believe they need to be a part of it, I’ve always viewed the way masculinity standards shape and effect men as something completely separate from women in this culture and a marginal part of feminism. It wasn’t until I read Michael Kimmel’s book Guyland

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Feminism | Posted by Julie Z on 01/31/2011

Femen: How Ukraine Does Feminist Protesting

The relationship between feminists and our bodies is a complicated one. Where as our general goal is to have ownership of and the ability to make choices about our bodies, we’re stuck in a society that wants to take that control away. We’re bombarded with images of exploited bodies every day. We’re told what our bodies should look like (the anatomically ridiculous stick with giant balloons attached to our chests) and what we should do with them (be sexually available but, for the love of God, not slutty. But not prudish either).

The feminist body conundrum is perfectly exemplified by the Ukranian organization “Femen.” Essentially, Femen is a feminist group of about 300 women who believe the best way to spread their aversion to things like sex tourism …

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Feminism | Posted by Rachel P on 10/27/2010

Finding What’s Right for You

In the midst of all the drama about the media’s effect on the sanity and bodies of young women, it’s nice to hear that some people are doing things right. It’s even nicer when those people are my friends.

One of my best friends and I are currently on gap years, and the other day, I invited her to my house to cook lunch. Afterwards, we flopped on my sofa, holding our bellies, good-naturedly moaning about how full we were. The conversation turned a bit more serious, however, when my friend said,

“Seriously though, I have put on weight these past few months, and I don’t like it!”

“You haven’t!”

“No, I have, look at my belly! And I don’t know why you have to deny that I’ve put on …

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