Updated: Nov 21, 2018
#FREETHENIPPLE #BEAUTYISSKINDEEP You've probably seen a lot of hashtags like those above & frequently in a time where our societal standards are being broken down around beauty, women and glass ceilings. Well, at least I thought we were. Today, Tuesday 20th November, I received a text at 6am asking if I would be available to represent a brand for a 4 hour gig. The brand in question is one of my favourites up until today. The pre-requisite of the job entails that
1. I must comfortably fit a size 8/10 uniform.
2. I must have long hair to be pulled back into a long pony tail
3. I must have healthy dewy skin
4. I must be fun, confident & able to interact with celebrity guests I didn't realise that my ability to perform a job was based on everything my body is. Wow, fuck me right?
In a time where we pride ourselves on the acceptance of our own bodies and obliterating the stigma of what beauty is, a big company can come in, knock the wind right out of your sails and remind you that you're not worthy to represent a brand because of what you don't look like. The thing that troubles me the most about this is that every single one of us women have hated our bodies, loathed our stomachs and will pull our bodies apart piece by piece because of what we thought beauty should look like. Heaven forbid that you're a size 6, 12, 14 or 18 +++ because you don't represent "BEAUTY".
After I had a moment with this initial text, I sent one back saying that if they are looking for a beautiful, outgoing, charismatic woman who is professional, then please let me know. I was then asked to send a photo of myself looking healthy.
Hahahahaha, Wow. I actually got so angry it made me cry. I revisited my negative self talk where I question my own worthiness, my beauty, my ENTIRE being. I hid away all those years ago when my hair was cut short and this has reconfirmed that apparently you can only be worthy with long hair. I've hidden away from my soft stomach, pulling my shirt up and out over my belly rolls when I sit down to camouflage them into a flat stomach. I've worn make up to hide my skin because it gets red and I look "sick & unhealthy"... All my life I have berated myself and kicked my own ass time and time again because of what I "SHOULD" look like or what I "SHOULD" be, and here we go again where a big company is able to confirm our deepest insecurities. Now, what I see health as, is moving toward the best version of you. Mentally, physically and emotionally. I am by no means saying that anyone that is a size 8/10 is evil because you are what people associate beauty with- I'm saying power to you girl! Stand in your own power but when others compare thats when it's unhealthy.
Do not get me wrong, I totally understand that companies usually would have an image that they want to portray that they want their brand associated with. For instance #bonds has done an OUTSTANDING job of being diverse and welcoming women to wear their underwear no matter your body hair, size, or colour. Or even #dove- their branding is so damn inclusive that you actually smile when you see their ads. But when your brand is literally out there for EVERYONE, like trust me, this brand is on EVERYONE'S feet... you , it really got my temper hot because as much as they are here to "serve everyone", they're really here for themselves and an image I whole heartedly disagree with. Obviously I told them that I cannot represent a brand whose core values does not align with my own. I have worked so hard for my empowerment of myself and my body that I won't let this strip me of anything but I feel that we need to solidify what we stand for within ourselves, for ourselves. Not for validation, love from others, a job...NOTHING. You do everything from a place of love for yourself and continue to show up for yourself & together we will create the ripples that will change the world of beauty. Until next time... B x