Back in March, I wrote about how these so-called ‘real’ women the media are always banging on about don’t always have curves. I pointed out that actual real women come in a pleasing variety of shapes sizes. Fat, thin, old or young, each of us is a unique combination of race, nationality, height, weight, build, eye colour… and we all have the potential to be beautiful. We just need to realise it. For the first time in a long while, I switched on the television this morning, resulting in me catching the tail end of an episode of How To Look Good Naked. No matter what you think of Gok Wan, you have to agree that he is pretty good at knowing how best to tackle women’s insecurities over their looks. But he can’t keep on doing this alone. Everyone who has fought body image demons at some point in their life knows how tricky it can be, and we should all be trying to use what we’ve learned to help others.
Sometimes it can be difficult, as some people aren’t quite ready to be helped yet, but every story often ends up being an inspiration to at least one person so it really is worth a try. Earlier this week, MissRetroGlam blogged about what she refers to as beautiful flesh. She pondered the labelling of plus sized models and took the opportunity to celebrate her own fuller figure, reminding us that “sexy, alluring, confident and beautiful come in all shapes and sizes.” She also requested via Twitter that people send her photos of themselves for a follow-up post celebrating beautiful bodies, and got quite a few encouraging responses and images in return. Although the images sent in were all from women, they could so easily not have been. When I wrote about women and body image in 2003, I stated that men weren’t under the same pressures. These days, rather sadly, it seems like that is no longer the case.
Whatever your size, shape or gender, being happy in your own skin is the most wonderful gift you can give yourself. If the thought of seeing a photo of your body on the internet scares you, why not try to come up with something you can do to make you feel more confident about the way you look. Whether that means doing a photoshoot, going to the gym, throwing out your most unflattering clothes, or getting up on stage – just go ahead and do it. Whatever the task you set yourself, if it helps to boost your confidence, you’ll notice the change in no time. L’Orťal are right about one thing – you really are worth it. You just don’t necessarily need to buy what they’re selling in order to be beautiful.