The Body Beautiful

By Jacqueline Cioffa

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As a former model and makeup artist who worked with Ashley Graham I can assure you she is not ‘fat,’ she is perfectly portioned. The average dress size for a woman in U.S. is 12 – 14. The modeling industry, fashion, and celebrity promote unhealthy and unrealistic skinny body standards for all women. This disturbs me on so many levels having witnessed firsthand the detriment to low self-esteem, eating disorders and unattainable weight issues has on young models that starved themselves to fit into a size zero.

Please don’t ever body shame anyone. I blame our culture hungry for gossip, entertainment television, the media, and fashion magazines for feeding the beast and creating a world where negativity and bullying of every kind are acceptable behavior. Social media bombards unrealistic images of skinny models, actresses and actors because Hollywood glam sells magazines and fuels the vicious, negative news cycle for girls, and boys who grow up with unrealistic and unhealthy body ideals.

As for Ms. Cheryl Tiegs I’m certain she is a victim of the media spins, twisting her comments into negative comments for a profit. Her words misconstrued, chewed up and spit out to make a dollar.

Don’t believe everything you read in a magazine or see on the tube I promise you the pictures have been trimmed, tucked and photoshopped.

Let’s celebrate and lift women up, be positive role models for young persons of every size.

Size should be measured by moral character, self-confidence, support, authenticity and kindness.

They are beautiful traits in women. Malala is beautiful, Ashley Graham is beautiful, Cheryl Tiegs is beautiful.

So is every non-famous, nameless woman who wakes at 5:00 AM, applies gloss, hops on a bus, goes to work, fights for a cause with a smile, and returns home to fix dinner. The every woman who tucks her kids if she chooses to have them, or perhaps decides to run for President.

To the woman who stands tall and puts her best, prettiest, healthiest face forward every day and wakes up to do it all over again, for me she is most beautiful.

I’m older and wiser today with a few more pounds on my frame, life experience and measure my weight by a new and more accurate scale.

I’m human. I’m a girl. I’m healthy, and I’m doing my best to fit in the skin I live in.

Same as you, and same as me.

 

 

12 comments

  1. Bravo Jackie!

    You know that I share your sentimates. Knowing Ms.Tiegs – she is my dear friend- I assure you that your comment about the media twisting her words is accurate.
    Thank you for this post. We all need a reminder now and then.

    1. Thank you, Julie.

      It’s hard enough to be a young girl, or boy in today’s society
      which glamorizes impossible stereotypes.
      Modeling can be an ugly and ruthless world damaging to self-esteem and healthy body issues as you and I experienced firsthand.
      I’m certain Ms. Tiegs as a former supermodel, and beautiful woman was a pawn caught in the media venom’s vicious PR spin.

      Let’s celebrate each other, not knock other women down.

      XX Jackie

  2. Well said. I am disgusted women, and some men too are treated as objects when we clearly are not. We are all human beings and created uniquely for a reason. And for this reason, it is absurd to fathom we could all be a size zero. I feel for those in the industries who think otherwise, but also believe more of them should speak up and out about it and attempt to do something to cut it off at the head. Easier said than done, I know. I lived like that in my youth and teen years, not allowed to eat certain foods. I became resentful and rebellious as a result. And know there is always someone willing to starve themselves for a part, a job, or a place on the team.

    1. Thank you Louise, for your comment.
      I have a hard time with my love – hate relationship for the modeling industry, my career as a model and the ridiculously, impossible Hollywood beauty standards.
      On one hand, modeling afforded me a life of freedom, travel and riches but the self-esteem price and negative vulture culture was
      too high. As a woman looking back far removed from that world, who was called ‘fat’ for
      over two decades, I take great pride and care with my words, and views about the beauty stereotype and body issues.
      I’m sorry our culture affected your psyche and health and hope that you have found a comfortable place in your skin.
      It’s hard enough to live in the world as a human, I feel it’s my duty to speak out
      for everyone struggling with body issues. Especially teenagers.

      I’m sharing my experience, standing tall, finding new beauty hero and losing the pounds. <3

      XX Jackie

    1. Aw, thank you Drew Sheldon. You are so sweet and astute.
      Much appreciated, and true. Women are so hard on each other…
      XX

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