In front of a mirror no one is safe from self-criticism

Every time I pick up a magazine I feel mixed emotions about the kind of articles that get published. I am torn between laughing and wanting to burn the magazines that open with 'Be happy in your own body', and close with 'How to lose 3 kilos in a week'. Without forgetting a 'Triple chocolate cake recipe', and a plethora of size 0 models.

Because logic.

male gaze mirror insecurities

First of all, dear Magazines, it turns out to be pretty hard to be body positive and healthy at the same time. Why? Simply because it looks like our body is not our own business anymore. Every action has some sort of social echo. Taking care of our appearance is good necessary, but we have to do it for ourselves. Of course, this touches various aspects of our lives, from what we decide to wear, to what we eat. The level of madness is so high that I am actively making a point by not ever apologising for not wearing any make-up. And it's a bigger deal than what you may think. Ask Alicia Keys!

I am sure at this point I have lost my male readers, but stay with me, because sooner or later this madness will reach your life as well, if it hasn't already. The boyfriend, for example, felt the weight of society on his own skin a few days ago. 

We were walking past one of my favourite clothes shopwhen the strangest thing happened. You see, this is the kind of shop where the boyfriend waits outside on the nearest bench knowing I will take ages in there. Anyway, that day the boyfriend pulled my hand and literally dragged me into said shop, mesmerized by a male top with a huge bucket of fries embroidered on the front. He went to try on the top and walked out of the changing room with a smile on his face. It fit and the print was awesome. 

This is where it all changed.

He looked in the mirror and I saw his smile turn into a frown. He said: "This top makes me look like I have a belly! Why would they put the print there, it makes me look fat. I don't think I will buy it after all."

In the span of a second, centuries of female fashion ran through my head. An endless list of items of clothing that, daily, remind us that we have too much of something and too little of something else on our bodies. And for the first time it hit me that boys could suffer from this madness too.

On that day I was standing next to him, saying not to listen to that little voice in his head that told him he wasn't thin enough for that top. 
I welcomed him to the club of people that felt inadequate because an item of clothing didn't suit them. No one is safe.

Also, I may or may not have sung the chorus from the song 'Beautiful' by Christina Aguilera. I thought that was fitting. Pun intended.

Image: via

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