There’s Nothing Real About These “Real Beauty” Campaigns
Although at first it appears that companies like Dove and Bare Minerals have taken a step in the right direction by running “Real Beauty” campaigns, there’s often nothing real about them.
When I see an ad that claims to feature real women, yet the woman are still remarkably flawless, it doesn’t do a whole lot for me. At least when I see a model in an advertisement I can tell myself that the way she looks is fake, enhanced by photo shop, and probably required harmful eating practices. When I see an ad that claims to be “real” or represent “average women,” yet not a single woman weighs over 140 pounds (the average weight of an American woman) I can’t help but feel as if I’m imperfect, and …
You know the saying that history can repeat itself? It sounds cliche, but it’s kind of shocking when it happens to you in real life.
Before I was a proud feminist/atheist/vegetarian I was unfortunately anorexic. Yet no one in my family seemed to notice the signs, even though when I think back they were pretty obvious. I would constantly check myself in the mirror and talk about dieting and weight loss. I would secretly go online and read fasting tips on anorexia sights. When my family discovered my notebook full of “thinsperation” I had a total meltdown and decided those days were over and I would come to respect my body and those of others for what they were.
I discovered Maggie Goes On A Diet during one of my morning rituals (I tend to start my days with a cup o' joe and a few interesting Yahoo! articles). As the above video explains, the book, aimed at girls as young as 6 or 7, is about an overweight 14-year-old who decides to go on a diet after being teased mercilessly by her classmates.
I probably don't have to tell you that Maggie has sparked a lot of controversy. The media has been raving about so-called "mommy bloggers" who are up in arms over how the book mishandles sensitive body image issues, but what I noticed after sifting through the comments on several news articles is a slightly different attitude:
I can remember the exact moment I became self conscious of my body. I was 12 and walking home from school when a boy I knew pointed at me, laughed, and said “Look how fat your legs are!”
I looked down at them and for the first time in my life I felt that my body was inadequate.
That moment has stayed with me forever, because that comment sparked a huge complex I had about my legs, something which still bothers me today. For years I only wore trousers and when I finally began wearing skirts and dresses, I always made sure I had tights or leggings on underneath, even in the Summer.
In fact, this Summer is the first since I was 12 that I have gone completely bare …
As long as I can remember, I have had a great deal of respect and gratitude for the body. I like my body in particular. It works. It is the reason I am me. When I was three years old my mom gave birth to my little sister. Delighted to have a younger sibling, it was a hard pill to swallow when we came to find that she was born with some very severe disabilities, including something called Down Syndrome. Her body was very different from mine inside and out. It was always, and will always be, a great weight on my heart to know that she will never know what it is like to have a body like mine. Because of that, gratitude comes easy.…
I’m 17 years old, a rising senior in high school, and I am unusual among a lot of my friends for this one reason: I don’t wear makeup.
That’s not to say I have never worn makeup, because I have, on occasion. I’ve worn it for two of the four high school dances I’ve attended, for the occasional band concert or dress-up day, and for the school musicals (although then it was stage makeup, a completely different matter). I have never worn makeup for a school picture. Why? It’s not like I’m heart-stoppingly gorgeous or anything. I am an average looking girl, but I’m comfortable with that.
There are a couple of reasons why I don’t wear makeup. One main reason is that I really like sleeping. I would much …
Saturday Vids: Andre’a – The 16 Year Old Body Image Role Model
This video needs little introduction - it speaks for itself - but I will say I originally saw this video on the website We Are The Real Deal and immediately wanted (want) to be Andre'a's best friend, because she is awesome, and we can all learn a thing or two from her confidence and positive message.
It sickens me that one of the most common issues plaguing young females today is that of body image distortion.
I say this as a person who once hated her body so much she welcomed the idea of going to extremes to obtain perfection. Whether it was by starving, purging, or over-exercising, if it “guaranteed” perfection, I would do it. It never occurred to me that the perfection I had in mind would never be obtainable. Nor did I realize that recovery would be a life-long struggle to relearn what it felt like to be full.
A year ago, I decided it was time that self-loathing relinquished its firm grip on my life. I did not consult a psychologist because I thought of my recovery as a journey I would …