Posts Tagged Beauty

“Brûlez vos soutiens-gorge.” It’s French for “beauty culture sucks.”

I was in Paris last week and against my better judgment, I went into the enormous Sephora on the Champs Elysées. It is huge, and overwhelming, and I’m convinced that after just a few minutes inside, my brain was totally addled by the smell of perfume.

But I’m pretty sure that, Dior-deranged or not, I would have been appalled by this ad for breast-firming cream:

The copy reads “Burn your bra.”

I stood there open-mouthed, staring at this thing, until other shoppers started staring at me. I motioned to my mother – a bad-ass Second Waver, someone who was actually around when the stuff of bra-burning legend was taking place – to look at it. We both uttered variations of, “you have got ...

I was in Paris last week and against my better judgment, I went into the enormous Sephora on the Champs Elysées. It is huge, and overwhelming, and I’m convinced that after just a few minutes inside, my ...

Are Venus Williams’ “Risque and Revealing” Outfits Fair Game?

The 2010 US Open is currently underway, and you’d think everyone would be talking serve speeds, match points, and “love”.

Alas, they’re only talking underwear. Venus Williams’ underwear, to be specific.

This is a public service announcement.

Attention: sportscasters John McEnroe and Dick Enberg, mainstream media outlets like the Huffington Post, non-mainstream media outlets, internet commentors, sports aficionados, coercive nazi-stylistas, Nsenga Burton, and all you other haters out there!!!!

Stop STOP Stop commenting excessively on the outfit choices of Venus Williams, one of the most talented professional athletes of all time.

Stop hosting “tug counts” to mark the number of times she adjusts her outfit while on the court.

Stop using sexist words like “hoochie” to describe her.

Stop objectifying ...

The 2010 US Open is currently underway, and you’d think everyone would be talking serve speeds, match points, and “love”.

Alas, they’re only talking underwear. Venus Williams’ underwear, to be specific.

This is ...

Promoting a worthy cause – but at what cost?

Singapore’s Breast Cancer Foundation has released a new ad campaign that urges women to prioritize preventing and curing breast cancer over more trivial concerns. The campaign, which uses the naked female body as the canvas for cartoons about bad hair days and pimples, raises important questions about what is permissible in the name of an undeniably good cause. The ads, which ask, “are you obsessed with the right things?” are NSFW, and therefore below the jump.

Not long ago, I wrote about my concern that the phrase “it’s for a good cause” can be used to cover all manner of sins. Specifically, I noted that there’s a tendency, when we raise awareness or funds for breast cancer research, ...

Singapore’s Breast Cancer Foundation has released a new ad campaign that urges women to prioritize preventing and curing breast cancer over more trivial concerns. The campaign, which uses the naked female body as the canvas ...

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The Williams sisters and the transgressive beauty of strength


Photo by Dewey Nicks for The New York Times

If you haven’t yet, check out this New York Times photo gallery of women tennis players. The accompanying article is about how the sheer dominance of Venus and Serena Williams has changed the sport in all sorts of ways. At first I was annoyed by the Times‘ framing: all about how the strength of these athletes is “beautiful.” Must we always use beauty as the highest compliment we can give a woman? Must we really describe how aesthetically appealing these athletes are? Can’t we just admire their skills and strength for what they are?

But the longer I thought about it, the more I came around to the “beauty” framing. ...


Photo by Dewey Nicks for The New York Times

If you haven’t yet, check out this New York Times photo gallery of women tennis players. The accompanying article is about how the sheer dominance of ...

And by “student,” we mean “conventionally beautiful woman”

Sydney radio station Nova 96.9 is holding a contest to find, “Sydney’s hottest university student,” its radio ad informs me. Awesome, a mixed-gender beauty pageant, I think to myself. How very progressive!
Silly Chloe.

Sydney radio station Nova 96.9 is holding a contest to find, “Sydney’s hottest university student,” its radio ad informs me. Awesome, a mixed-gender beauty pageant, I think to myself. How very progressive!
Silly Chloe.

Waist not…

After the photoshopping fiascos from Ralph Lauren and Ann Taylor, I thought we’d seen the worst of overzealous, totally damaging digital alteration. But I guess I was wrong. Thanks to Photoshop Disasters for highlighting this horrendous ad from Proenza Schouler:


And check out this one: Victoria’s Secret, the company that wants you to love your body, aren’t just hypocritical. They’re also apparently really lazy!

After the photoshopping fiascos from Ralph Lauren and Ann Taylor, I thought we’d seen the worst of overzealous, totally damaging digital alteration. But I guess I was wrong. Thanks to Photoshop Disasters for highlighting ...

Not Oprah’s Book Club: Women, Food, and God

When I was researching my book, Perfect Girls, Starving Daughters, awhile back now, one of the authors that I found most enlightened in her approach to talking about women’s relationship to food, fitness, and success was Geneen Roth. Roth is widely known as the thinker who popularized the idea of “intuitive eating”; just as it sounds, it is the idea that we can be most healthy (body, mind, and spirit) if we reconnect with our organic hungers, investigate when we feel full, what our body really wants to eat versus our emotional subconscious etc.
It freaks people the fuck out, as you might imagine. What, you mean I can eat anything? What will prevent me from eating Oreos for every ...

When I was researching my book, Perfect Girls, Starving Daughters, awhile back now, one of the authors that I found most enlightened in her approach to talking about women’s relationship to food, fitness, and success was Geneen ...

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