What if we all just loved who we are

I woke up this morning with a coffee and reading the news on Huffington Post.  Like most days  I start at the front page news but after reading about all the crazy tumultuous things happening in our world and feeling slightly helpless, I cruised over to the style section with hopes dropping out with a bit of mindless fashion news.  
Although that was not the case, right there in Black and white were stories of a Beauty Queen being too fat, she lost her crown and had to fight to get it back and young models reduced to eating cotton balls drenched in Orange juice just to stay thin. Believe it or not there was also a story (fact or Fiction who knows) of a mom who is giving her 8 year old Botox

Raising a daughter and being a woman myself, I am all too aware that so many girls and woman hate most parts to all of their bodies. This is nothing new, we woman have fought this battle all our lives, since the beginning of time. Anyone who has studied art or fashion history knows what woman have done to manipulate themselves into what society views as beautiful.  I know first hand, since I have struggled with this myself growing up and still do at times. But  raising a daughter has made me look at how we treat ourselves and each other and it's not good. 

Starting this style and fashion blog, as well as working with woman everyday in my job has made me realize it's out of control. It's not just our daughters either it's adult woman too.  I have woman who are well into there 30's and 40's, who are thin and attractive tell me they look fat or ugly all too often. It literally freaks me out because they look great but they don't feel like they do. Something is not right with their body or perfect with their appearance and instead of seeing all they have, they dwell on the things they seemingly think they don't.  I have to say for me, turning forty was a blessing because I started to accept myself and actually like parts of my body. Also raising Camilla who has always had a strong mind of her own and never cared much about what people thought of her, taught me a lot as well. I have to say her strength of character in who she is made me reevaluate myself worth. 

I came across this video and site 
It's about making a change and loving who you are.
We woman need to stop hating our bodies and for me I can't blame the fashion industry or media because I think it starts at home and every woman can be and have everything if we believe we can. 
To me it's about stopping the comparisons and have acceptance of each other.
We can place blame all we want but it does no good and really it's within all of us to change the  perceptions of what is.

These photos of the beautiful plus size model Lizzi Miller that was featured in Glamour mag back in September 2009 was a great step in the right direction to show woman beauty comes in all shapes and sizes. 
To me she is not really plus size but more like real size and I wish woman could see that she is not only beautiful but looks perfect and comfortable in her own skin.

Naturally Critical from Stephanie Ifill on Vimeo.

This last bit is a snippet of a video where young woman were asked two questions.

1. What do you like about your natural appearance?
2.What you don't like about your natural appearance?

Just watch the difference you may or may not be shocked.

Now go have a wonderful weekend full of love and happiness
XX Valerie and Camilla


Stacey Kay said...

Lizzi Miller is definitely REAL sized to me too. I loved this post, I went and shared the video on my blog's facebook page. Thanks for sharing!

Stacey Kay
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Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing. I think you might like this, too: http://www.adipositivity.com/ It is a project by a photographer hoping to create acceptance and love for all bodies.

this free bird said...

This is so fantastic - I'm glad you spoke up and said something. It IS out of control. I heard that botox story on Nancy Grace and almost spontaneously combusted. The cotton balls in orange juice is making me sick to my stomach. So sad!!

You know there's a group of us that started doing the 30 day shred (bloggers, fb'ers, twitter'ers) and what I've loved is seeing women saying - i want a healthy body, i want to feel better, i want a balanced life - and everyone is still eating and enjoying the health aspect not focusing on thin, thin, thin.

We have girls coming up behind us and it's our obligation to teach them to love themselves and treat their bodies well. You go lady!


Reyna @fashionmist♥ said...

This is a wonderful post! xx

Lula said...

Beautiful post, loved reading through it! I often ask myself these questions and I do try to "love myself" but I find that it never really works, it's like I'm trying to force myself into liking my body or my face or my nose etc. It's why I admire women who embrace the skin they're in so much! Really inspiring.
Have a great one!!

Absolutely Mrs. K said...

you know everything is so relative and this post reminds me of that. we live in a crazy world, i have explored the blog world and it is so hard to coop. there is only one question: are you going to be popular. okay to don't have to be a super model, but there are some standards and lets face it. the most popular blogs are no the ones with 'ugly' girls (here i go, there are no ugly girls, but you know what i mean). the first photo is so devastating. and i loved the video: but remember the discussion of the best selling magazine cover. it was Lady gaga, because it was lady gaga, or was it because she was practically naked. the worst selling was: Jessica Simpson being all natural. it is such an interesting discussion, and this post made us aware that we cannot stop this discussion. and you are so right about the plus size, BTW she has a stunning face.

Sisters and Sisters said...

This is an amazing post!

H&C from Amsterdam

sacramento said...

What a wonderful a true to life post. I was quite shock about: eating cotton balls drenched in orange juice or mums who gives their daughters botox at any age. Ahhhhhhhhhh.
Fantastic, my dear Camille.
Mujch love to you both.

sacramento said...

I have shared it on facebook.

Anna said...

I love this post. Thanks so much for sharing. What an eye-opener! So many people can relate to this post. We have to break the mould!

the Citizen Rosebud said...

I find this post via Sacramento's post on facebook. Brilliant post. Giving me pause- as I'm quite critical of my middle-aged body. I've nominated this post for Link Love. Cheers. -Bella Q
the Citizen Rosebud

Courtney K. said...

It really is just so sad how girls are so insecure and harsh on themselves. I am guilty of this myself. When reading the questions, I could not think of many thinks I like about my natural appearance, but I instantly created a long list in my mind of what I didn't like about myself.

I think that society plays a HUGE role in this issue. There are hundreds of beauty ads, or just edited faces and bodies placed all around the world, on the internet, billboards, commercials. It is just countless, really. There is nothing we can do to stop this trend, but we still must find a way to look at ourselves in the same way that we look at all of these women with envy.

I try to stand in front of the mirror everyday and point out something that I like about myself, but I usually come up short. We are all guilty of this. And I am so glad that you guys have chose to make a post dedicated to supporting young women in their search for confidence and loving themselves.

Love always,

Dear Darling,, said...

I LOVE this post! (and this blog!)


B.COLELLA said...

this post is so inspiring! it made my day...there needs to be more editorials like this.

thank you for your wonderful comments on my blog, it means a lot that you check it out, its so hard to build up a following!

all the best...and i look forward to more inspiring posts from you both!

xx, bridget

xoGaby said...

this is a beautiful post. love it.


Tina said...

Brilliant post - I've just tweeted about it!!!
Wish more people shared this mentality!!!

Ria said...

I like that I have a body to live in. And that it's considered a plus size, because plus is better.
I don't think there's something I dislike. Ok there are flaws (stretch marks, cellulite etc included) but everyone has them.And they're not stopping me from living the way I want.
I'd rather be hated for my real body than loved for something I'm not!I loved this post!

Tea For Two said...

Great post :)

A guy on the news interview on the website commented that the Miss San Antonio court case was a waste of tax dollars. I'd have to disagree. He isn't considering the fact that it was fought on principle so that other women wouldn't have to argue for their right to maintain a healthy weight and have that weight fluctuate naturally without being scrutinised and fired. I think it's yet another development in our journey towards getting closer to reality and rejecting ridiculous expectations.

Agnes in Wonderland said...

Very good post. I totally agree with you. We have to love ourselfs and our bodys/appearances. I would like to see models like Lizzi on the catwalks :) Real, beautiful women :) I don't know what people see in thin, emaciated and unfeminine looking bodys. I know that each person is differnt and for example a woman wants to become more fatter cause she's so thin but her predispostions don't allow her to to this (but examples like this one are rather rare). It's really terrifying how media shapes young people/children vision of beauty. I hope someday our society will realize which world is more important- the artifical or the real world with real people.