Tag Archives: magazines

Fat. It’s Not A Sin Anymore.

28 May

The World’s First Size 22 Supermodel! That’s the headline on the cover of People magazine this week. The picture accompanying it is of Tess Holliday, a 29 year old model who also happens to be 5’5 and weigh 280 pounds. The typical model is about 5’10 and 120 pounds. Her face is what would be considered beautiful by conventional standards, a model’s face for sure. Her body wouldn’t usually even qualify her for plus size modeling. Most of the time plus size models aren’t even actually plus sized. They are approximately a size 10, which would be significantly less than Holliday’s size 22. To put this in perspective, the average American woman is a size 16-18. Although in Beverly Hills I am pretty sure it’s more like a size 2-4.

I grew up obsessed with fashion TV and magazines. Along with that obsession grew a fascination with models. From a very young age I could tell you the physical stats and personal basics about most models walking the runway in the 1990’s. Even in college my walls were plastered with pages from the magazines of high fashion looks I loved and the uber super models wearing them. I began to think that looking like them was an attainable goal.  Looking back on it now I realize that I had no clue that these women were born this way. Genetically predisposed to be six inches taller than the average woman, born with long thin necks, and given a symmetrical face that is pleasing to a camera. I wish someone would have clued me in to all this and it could have saved me quite a bit of grief in the body shaming and body acceptance department.

Maybe if there had been a beautiful woman on the cover of People magazine that was more than twice my size being called a supermodel, it would have made a difference. These days there are entire movements dedicated to body acceptance. Teaching girls and women to accept and even celebrate their bodies no matter what size or shape they are. There are plus size models on billboards and in major ad campaigns. Not only all this but now on any Disney show you will see the chubby girl, the kid with glasses and frizzy hair, the friend in a wheelchair, the neighbor with dyslexia, the divorced parents and even the super smart yet still attractive girl. 
I stopped buying fashion and tabloid magazines long ago. I had decided to stop feeding my obsession and stop supporting an industry that can be destructive in countless ways. Yesterday I bought 5 copies of this month’s People magazine with Tess Holliday on the cover. I want this month’s edition to sell out, I want the publishers, advertisers and my children to hear me. I wish I had seen a cover like this when I was 8 years old. 

At least I get to see it now.

xoxo

  

Somewhere between Cover Girl and Maybeline my heart broke

4 Apr

Today, as HB and I stood in the makeup aisle at Target, she said something to me that made me want to tuck her back inside my belly where I could protect her, forever. As I contemplated between Falsies mascara and the one that Gwen Stefani wears in all those commercials, my little girl was asking herself the question I hoped she never would. She looked up at me with her pigtails and big green eyes and said, “Mommy, will boys only like me if I’m straight?” Now, she didn’t mean straight like the opposite of Ellen Degeneres, she meant thin. HB had asked me before if when she grew up if she would be straight like her Auntie and the girls in the magazines or would her tummy stay round. I had explained a million times before that people come in all shapes and sizes. We had read the book, It’s Ok To Be Different, 500 times. I kept Barbie dolls out of the house for as long as I could and I even banned Princess Paraphernalia for the past two years. Where had I gone wrong and how could this be happening to my strong fierce 5 year old? I gained my composure and looked her right in the eyes and said, “Boys like all different types of girls. You are perfect. Just be yourself.” She shrugged her shoulders and said, “Ok.”

You are perfect, just be yourself. I’m sure somebody told me that when I was her age, but I don’t think I actually believed it until quite recently.

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