End apology, begin rant.
If you follow on FACEBOOK, you likely saw the following post...
here's the link if you're interested), but that they *are* beautiful and for some insane reason, we still feel the need to makeup and then photo shop them to no end. The Dove Campaign for Beauty does a great job of illustrating this in the short video below...
Weight: 110 lbs (freaking out!)
Bust: 39" (considering the massive percentage of her weight that is distributed here + freaking out again!)
Shoe size: 3 (?!!?!?!?!?!?!?)
She wouldn't be able to walk upright and she wouldn't be able to menstruate.
And this is what we give little girls as their first ideal for beauty. Don't even get me started on her massively long, yet extremely voluminous hair. I don't even want to *think* about how much that would weigh in real life. I sincerely hope the 110 lbs doesn't include that figure. Wow. We are setting ourselves up for failure in the beauty department. No wonder an estimated 8 MILLION Americans have an eating disorder. We need to really reconsider what we allow as a nation.
Why do we allow so much altering to be done to photos? Not every country does. I love England for constantly BANNING ads that are misleading or overly photo shopped. I remember I bought a magazine in London once and literally going into raptures at the sight of "Not actual results: false eyelashes and computer generation used to achieve look" at the bottom of a mascara ad. Let me tell you how much easier it would be to shop for mascara, or makeup in general, if companies had to show the actual results in their advertising. We could go that route! We could demand more ethical photos in our magazines.
Why don't we?
I, for one, am tired of having to constantly remind myself that the women in these pictures are fake. Fake. Not real. Computer generated. If I don't, it's so easy to become depressed while looking at a magazine. I had a great stat for that once back when I worked with young girls. It was an alarmingly large percentage of girls and women who felt bad about themselves/had a worsened self image after five minutes of perusing a fashion magazine. I'll have to find it and update this later. I'm big enough to admit that it definitely affects me. I start questioning my weight (insane. in-stinking-sane), my skin clarity, my skin color (pallleee! Not even a *hint* of summer glow), the length of my neck (who *thinks* of these things?!) and so much more. When I write it out, it seems really silly and trite- but when KIM KARDASHIAN is being photoshopped, who can blame me?!
Speaking of which- hats off to the celebs like Kate Winslet who refuse to be altered beyond recognition. Good for you, ladies. You're helping us win ground one victory at a time.
The point is- I don't want to continue promoting unrealistic expectations of beauty. I don't want my gorgeous, perfect nieces or the two beautiful little girls I care for to grow up comparing themselves to something that just isn't real. I don't want them comparing themselves to anyone, actually. You'll always find someone more (or less) beautiful than you, even in the real world. Comparison isn't healthy. I want to help create a world that focuses less on our culture's standard of outer beauty (not that I don't like doing the best with what I have!) and more on being the best versions of *ourselves* that we can be. Cultivating who we are as people, learning to be beautiful to everyone, even the blind, because of the way we interact with our world and the way we love others.
I honestly don't think that world will ever exist. But we can make *our* world that way by changing our own perceptions of beauty. By watching what we say about other women --- and to ourselves--- when considering what our culture would deem as beautiful. By praising the qualities (like kindness, generosity, compassion and so many more!) that other women *can* help, rather than despising or concentrating on the body or face that she can do nothing to alter. By considering what we bring into our homes and what we spend our money on. By writing letters to companies, asking them to reconsider how much photoshop is really necessary. Because, honestly, if you *need* all of that help to convince us that your product is worth our money-- maybe it really isn't.
End of rant. Bottom line? Love yourself today. Love the way you are. Don't let society make you feel for even one second that you aren't beautiful. And next time you see a flawlessly perfect image of a women on a magazine cover, remind yourself that is in fact, too good to be true. FAKE!
I love you, readers! All the best and thanks for ranting with me today.