Okay, is anyone as tired as I am about the whole “real women have curves” movement? Does this mean that, even if you have lady parts, if you’re skinny, you’re not a real woman? Because I’m sorry, but I think this is ridiculous. Haven’t we already done way too much over the course of history to feel beautiful? (If you don’t know how much, check out my article “Beauty Through the Ages”). But now, instead of doing something dangerous for our outside, we do something dangerous for our inside by putting down others to feel better about ourselves. I’m sorry, but plain and simple, this is another form of bullying. Unfortunately, it’s everywhere.
No matter where I look (Facebook has a page dedicated solely to making curvy girls feel like they’re more beautiful than skinny girls and I literally just read a comment in a beauty magazine about how it was so nice to have Kim Kardashian on the cover because her curves of a “real woman” were a good role model for the commenter’s daughter), there are people putting down the thin to talk up the “natural” beauty. And when they say natural, they mean not thin. Because yeah, a thin girl of course isn’t natural. Cue eye roll here.
Okay, so I can totally understand the beginning of this movement. Since the ‘60s, the thinner you are, almost the more beautiful you supposedly are. The silhouettes of Marilyn Monroe were replaced with those of Twiggy, and then Kate Moss came onto the scene in the ‘90s and all of a sudden it was all about looking like a heroin addict. With the average woman becoming larger, but the average model becoming thinner, women just didn’t feel beautiful. But that’s not because of the other women. That’s what most people don’t seem to get. If you have healthy body confidence, then you won’t see yourself as less than when you come upon one of these smaller girls. Instead you see them for beautiful, as well as you see yourself that way. So if you have body issues, no matter what type of body you look at, you’re going to see it in a skewed way.
Of course, since so many people seem to have body issues, they blamed looking at models for their problems. That’s when “real” women started being put in magazines. I remember the first real picture in Glamour that began this. Instead of the typical thin model, there was this girl (Lizzie Miller) who was a size 12 or so. She was nude with only a tiny pair of panties on, and she had this gut that hung over the waistband of it. I’ll admit that, at the time, I had my own body issues. So to see this woman who was the same size as me, if not bigger than me, and see her fat rolls and everything, and the way that, despite them, I still saw her as beautiful, really was the turning point into realizing that I was beautiful despite what I felt was a flaw. So many people responded to that picture that Glamour started adding “real” women to their magazine every once in a while.
Okay, so as I said, this began as a positive movement. The “average” woman was able to see herself in the pages of the magazines and see that she was beautiful. But then it got out of control. Instead of just being the average woman, or the curvy woman, it became the “real” woman.
I myself am not a skinny girl. I’m about 5 lbs overweight, all of which is on my belly as my legs, butt, and back are solid muscle. But I don’t think that gives me a right to tear down skinny girls. Instead, I look at them and wonder what they don’t like about their bodies, because “perfect” or not, everyone has something they hate about their bodies, and hopefully something they love. I’ve even heard of skinny girls who try so hard to gain weight, but they can’t. They’re crying about their weight just as much as girls trying to lose it do. And comments like, “Only dogs like bones, men like meat” only add to this hatred of skinny girls’ small frames.
I have this friend who always makes you turn your negative comments into a positive. Don’t like your huge calves? Well, they make it so you can run faster. Don’t like your jiggly belly, well, it means you have food storage if you ever get stuck somewhere. Don’t like your enormous butt, well, it shows your heritage. Or your huge biceps. Well, they mean that you can do more push-ups then the men. These are my things. The parts of my body that I’ve had issues with and the things that I told myself to make them into positives. And when I have a “fat” day, my friend will make me look at a picture of Queen Latifah and admit how absolutely beautiful she is. It’s changed my whole outlook. Now I can see a skinny girl and I don’t think anything other than what makes her beautiful. I do the same when I see a “curvy” woman. When we can change how we see others, only then can we change the way we see ourselves. Because if we’re looking at women and degrading them to make ourselves feel better, what we’re really doing is putting our minds in a negative frame of mind until that’s all it will see: the negative.
So let’s do this together. Whenever we see a man, or a woman, anyone, if we think a negative thought about their looks, let’s make an effort to find something positive. Because we’re all beautiful in our own way. And please, PLEASE, never ever talk about what body makes a woman real because the fact is, the skinny girls are just as real as the bigger girls. So let’s show the love and solidarity that make us decent human beings who aren’t defined by their size.
I’ve attached some of these anti-skinny girl memes so you can see sort of what I’m talking about. To see them, click this link to go to Fierce and Free Fashion’s Convozine page: http://convozine.com/fierceandfreefashion/35735