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    Showing posts with label Body Image. Show all posts

    96 Bodies You Won't See On Billboards -- But Should

    Only 5 percent of women have the type of body we see on billboards and in TV commercials.

    The "Expose" project wants you to see the remaining 95 percent.

    Blogger and activist Jes Baker teamed up with photographer Liora K to showcase women's bodies just as they are -- unfiltered, un-Photoshopped, and totally amazing.

    "When was the last time you opened up your browser and saw a beautiful image of a body shape that looked just like yours?" Baker asked in a blog post introducing the series.

    Ninety-six women, recruited on Facebook, gathered in Tucson, Arizona to disrobe in front of total strangers in the name of body love. This is the second time Baker and K have shot images for this project.

    In a blog post about the shoot, photographer Liora K explained how she stressed the beauty and uniqueness of every participant during the process:

        What I really wanted the women to get out of our time (how ever brief) together was that they were IMPORTANT. That their bodies deserved to be seen, that what they perceive as faults are simply THEM, and are neither right nor wrong. That showing their bodies won’t innately cause them harm. That their breasts won’t cause damage to those around them, or their bellies or thighs either. That their nudity, while making them vulnerable, does not make them at fault. And that lastly, their bodies are their vehicles through life, and to treat them with kindness. I hope that came across.

    'Stop The Beauty Madness' Brands Ads With Brutally Honest Messages

    It's a psychological itch that the most enlightened, successful and even beautiful women still tend to scratch: if I look better, I am better.

    Now one campaign is trying to convince others to break free from that line of thought. The Stop The Beauty Madness campaign wants you to "feel like you've been socked in the gut" when you see its jarringly frank ads, says its founder Robin Rice.

    Stop The Beauty Madness is a series of 25 advertisements branded with honest messages that highlight the true "madness" involved in creating and meeting beauty standards. Rice, an author and the founder of Be Who You Are Productions, started the campaign to challenge an internalized belief that a woman's beauty determines her value.

    Rather than attempt to fit more diverse types of women into an already narrow definition of beauty, Stop The Beauty Madness questions the value we place on beauty in the first place. "My main mission is to say if women are worried about their weight and their looks to the point that they're not actually putting themselves in the world, then we're missing out on some really extraordinary individuals and some really important conversations we need to be having," Rice told HuffPost. "Women need to be helping the world move in a more beautiful direction -- a genuinely beautiful direction."
    Beauty, Rice reminds us, can be both meticulously arranged or totally accidental. And yet, we privilege "effortless" beauty free of the true effort (and anguish) often required to achieve it, while criticizing those who happen to be very thin for succumbing to beauty standards. "Even if you fit the mold, you get in trouble for fitting the mold," Rice said. "You can't win."

    his double-edged sword is why Stop The Beauty Madness takes a broad approach, addressing all elements of a woman's appearance from race, to age, to weight, to several at once. "Naturally thin women, or women who choose to work out and have really buff bodies, or elderly women, are not excluded from this conversation. They get their own backlash," Rice said.

    The campaign intentionally uses stock photos, the type of images used to illustrate many glossy magazine articles. "We wanted to use what was out there," Rice told HuffPost. "There's not lot of stock photos of African-American women compared to white women. There's not a lot of edgy photographs of women. There were countless pictures of women on scales trying to lose weight. That shapes our conversation," she said.

    5 Steps To Mind-Blowing Sex

    It's a shame that even though women are making equal pay for equal work and rising in the ranks of business, industry and the professions, when it comes to sex, many of us are still not getting our due.

    Some bad old habits and beliefs are keeping us from having the best sex possible. I'm suggesting seven simple, common-sense ways for women to have more fun and fulfilling sex:
    1. Don't Talk Yourself Out Of What You Need
    It's too easy for us women to convince ourselves to settle for less. We're so helpful and accommodating, so eager to please and afraid of rejection that we're quick to give up the things we need, including when it comes to sex.

    What we need to see is that doing this will leave us chronically frustrated. While it's true that every relationship requires a certain amount of compromise, going without the things that we really need just doesn't work. We'll end up unhappy in the relationship or resentful toward our partner.

    The bottom line is, we need to know what we can't live without, sexually, and what we just can't live with. We ignore these non-negotiables at the expense of a fulfilling sex life.
    2. Accept Your Body As It Is Now
    We need to be in touch with our bodies; with what feels good, what feels not so good and what feels wrong. We also really need to stop judging ourselves in terms of our weight and our shape. Only a superficial dope would give us a hard time over our imperfections. If someone makes us feel bad about our physical selves, this is more a reflection of his inadequacies than of our own.

    Our negative self-talk has to stop. The running commentary on how fat we are, how much cellulite or how many wrinkles we have is guaranteed to kill the mood, often before it even starts. Feeling good about our bodies is crucial if we're going to let go and enjoy ourselves. Being physically self-conscious will keep us from experiencing the joyful abandon of great sex.
    3. No Pets In The Room
    We might love Fluffy or Rover, but they don't belong in the bedroom when we're being intimate. Our pets are very territorial and could get jealous or want to play, too. Dogs might bark or even growl. Cats might jump onto the bed and start walking around. We can avoid these disasters by remembering to shut the door and leave our four-legged friends outside.
    4. Enjoy The Give And Take
    The best sex is the kind in which each person is trying to please the other one. The sharing in sex is one of the things that make it great. It can be technically amazing, but when one person gets the impression that the other person really isn't there with them, it can ruin the whole experience.

    What makes someone a fantastic lover is not their technical ability or their repertoire of moves but their attentiveness and their efforts to make their partner happy. When both people show that they really care about meeting their partner's needs, sex becomes something wonderful.
    5. Share Your Needs And Feelings With Your Partner
    If you can't ask them for what you want in bed, you shouldn't be sleeping with them. Good sex happens when we feel safe and at ease. If we're afraid to ask for something or to tell our partner that we don't like something, sex will never be more than mediocre.

    This second tip follows from the first one, in that once we identify what we want and don't want, we have to express these things clearly. It's unfair to expect our partner to be a mind-reader and "prove" that they care by somehow knowing what we want without our having to tell them. Healthy sex comes out of healthy communication.

    In The Water, They Can't See You Cry

    A year after the 1996 Olympics, I ranked twenty-third in the world in the 100-meter breaststroke and twenty-sixth in the 200-meter.

    My parents did their best to shelter me from the unanimous criticism of public opinion. I didn't need anyone to tell me how bad I stunk; I knew that already. The harsh numbers of my ranking told the whole story. At least that's what I thought until I got acquainted with a whole new kind of low.

    I had come into the living room of our house to find the newspaper because I wanted the movie listings; I needed to find a flick I could lose myself in. After looking on the couches and coffee table, I sat on the recliner chair where my dad read the newspaper and all of his books. I saw a piece of newsprint sticking out from in between a stack of books. Thinking it might be the paper, I lifted up the four or five volumes on top. Instead I found a hidden stash of clippings and knew immediately they were about me.

    Since the start of my career, my dad was my own personal archivist, clipping any and all articles about me so that I could have them later on in life. But after carefully cutting them out, he always put them into the big red scrapbook he kept in his room.

    Reading the dozen or so articles in my lap, I saw clearly why these hadn't made it into the book. Sportswriters called me fat, washed-up, and finished. I'd never do anything good in swimming again, they wrote. There it was in black and white, a complete validation of the negative voice playing on a loop in my head. It was true, I was a fat loser. The words I attacked myself with stared out at me from the page, causing a kind of sweet dread. I had suspected that everyone was talking about me, and they were. The shame -- this wasn't just a couple of mean girls at school but the whole world -- hurt so much it almost veered 180 degrees into pleasure. I wrapped myself up in sadness like a martyr, then tucked the clips back in their hiding spot so my dad wouldn't know I had found them.

    I didn't talk about what was happening to me with anybody -- not my dad, mom, friends, or coach. Everyone knew that I knew I sucked, but we all ignored it. Hop into the pool, do your sets, dinner, homework, bed. Business as usual. At the time I was grateful for the normalcy. The last thing I wanted to do was draw more attention to myself. Not addressing something, however, doesn't mean it goes away.

    Topshop Pulls Image Of 'Size Zero' Codie Young, Model Responds

    Topshop has taken a graphic off its website after being called out by the Daily Mail and various anti-eating disorder groups.

    The Mail first spotted the "painfully thin size-zero model" Codie Young on the store's website last week, writing, "The pale young woman with a gaunt face is seen on the fashion stores homepage wearing tiny clothes that hang off her skeletal frame."

    At the time, Helen Davies from the British anorexia charity Beat told the newspaper, "This is not the sort of thing we want to see in magazines and on the internet. It's a constant battle against eating disorders and Topshop is not helping matters. For girls who see these kind of images it can be very damaging."

    Andrew Leahy, Topshop's head of publicity, since reached out to the Mail, explaining, "Topshop is confident that Codie is a healthy young woman and we do not feel it necessary to remove her from our imagery based on your feature. However we do recognise regretfully that the angle this image has been shot at may accentuate Codie's proportions making her head look bigger and neck longer in proportion to her body. [...] The clothes she is wearing are a sample size 10 so in some instances they may look a little looser than normal."

    In any case, Leahy adds, "Topshop is proud of its heritage of celebrating individual-looking girls who offer an alternative more unusual beauty, however we take your comments very seriously," resulting in the removal of the photograph and its replacement with a different pic of the model from another angle.

    18-year-old Codie took to her blog, remarking that she was hurt by all of the comments:

    ‘What no woman or man needs is anyone telling them they are ‘too fat’ or ‘too skinny”

    LeAnn Rimes, who is frequently criticised for being ‘too skinny’, is very outspoken when it comes to body image issues - and she recently published an article on her website where she discusses the topic:

    “Imagine – your dad, who you idolize, walks into your bathroom one morning. You’re in the 11th grade. He lovingly asks you, ‘When are you going to take care of yourself and lose some weight?’ He doesn’t mean anything by it other than, ‘I love you and want to see you happy and healthy.’ But he didn’t exactly say that. In your young mind, he said what all of the other girls in school say to a beautiful, normal girl—’You’re fat.

    I could tell you a similar story, in one way or another, about each and every one of my girlfriends. And I bet a lot of you can too. We could probably say the same story about girls we’ve never even met. Would you then think before you spoke? We are all made with the design for our bodies to change in many different ways as our lives unfold.

    BeautifulPeople.com Invaded By 30,000 Uglies

    Today in fact or fiction: BeautifulPeople.com, a dating website so vain it probably thinks this article's about it (and it is!), was briefly invaded by 30,000 "ugly" people who were granted membership thanks to a Shrek virus, likely planted by a reject.
    Typically, BeautifulPeople.com hopefuls submit photographs to the site, which are then voted on by its 700,000 existing members. However, Greg Hodge, managing director of BeautifulPeople.com, said in a press release, "We got suspicious when tens of thousands of new members were accepted over a six-week period, many of whom were no oil painting." The unattractive additions (including 11,924 Americans) were cast off the "island," as Hodge calls it, and a hotline was set up to handle any hurt feelings.
    Hodge explained to The Huffington Post, "Communities need to be exclusive to serve the purpose of the community. Exclusion is prevalent all through society. Look at Mensa and the national football team; all go through a selection process, some are accepted some are not. BeautifulPeople is no different aside from the fact that our process is democratic. There are some sites out there where you have to be a certain religion or color. BeautifulPeople is open to every race, color, creed and religion and represents every ethnicity, the proviso being our members find you beautiful."
    He added, "If Mensa's database was mistakenly flooded with 30,000 dummies, they would not start putting out easier IQ tests!"
    So what makes for a perfect BeautifulPeople.com member? Hodge told us, "Men will vote on women based solely on how they look...surprise, surprise. Women look at the bigger overall picture; yes, the men have to be attractive but they also have to write a reasonably articulate profile description, show a little character or sense of humor. A high income also helps as does a picture showing a good lifestyle."
    We were pretty wary of this too-good-to-be-true scoop, so BeautifulPeople put us in touch with Asia, 39, who remarked to HuffPost, "Because looks are important to me in a partner, I want to belong to a website where every profile I search through is attractive.

    When asked what message she had for those who were rejected, she said, "
Bye bye! No, seriously, I would say don't take it too hard. I'm a make-up artist working in the beauty business in L.A! I see rejection all the time. Everyone has their strengths. You have to pick yourself up and get on with real life."
    Read More....http://www.huffingtonpost.com

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