It is not a tag, it is not a post (even though it is an incredibly long one).

It’s a battlecry.

This post was inspired to me by Goddessinspired and DeOrnatuMulierum.

Casus belli has been Nigella Lawson’s cover (to me she was Miss Nobody, but I’ve learned she has a cooking show, with highly caloric recipes, and proud to be a hot curvy girl, in the cover she has lost weight). People is yelling at photoshop, people is ready to say “She looked better before”, people ready to say “Hurray she lost weight”.

I’m ready to say: whatev?

I’ll articulate: without considering the fact that ANYONE on any cover of any magazine will be put through photoshop and therefore it’s almost pointless discussing if the boobs are real or not, if the skin looks like that because of nature, foundation or lights.

But most of all whatev because if miss Nigella decided to loose weight it’s only her business, if she liked herself curvy or not, it’s her own business. Like Goddessinspired said very well, as long as you’re healthy you can do whatever you want.

And why are we so stubborn on the matter anyway? Why are we all so ready to say what a woman should or shouldn’t do?

I’m not talking only about the physical appearance, ok HotLikeThis is born to offer a different model of woman, not the tall and skinny one, not the curvy one, not the one who has a new custom made adjective that looks good on a glossy cover, but the one that likes herself. Period. Yes, period, a woman that likes herself the way she is (ok, ok, avoiding being sloth and saying “Oh well this is who I am and there’s no chance to improve, whatev” because this is not healthy, if there is something healthy you could do to improve).

I can’t help but thinking that focusing on the physical appearance of a woman is just the tiniest battle that always flames up for no reason than distracting us from other more important topics: what religions, governments and other entities want about and for a woman’s body.

Time ago I wrote a post that sprouted from the questions the “so called feminism” aroused in me. If you shave you’re no feminist, if you don’t wear your bra you’re ruthless, if you want a career you don’t know where you really belong, if you don’t want children you’re going to hell.

My conclusion, now and then, it’s always the same: it is past time everybody stops telling women what they should or shouldn’t do and let them really “free” (in the proper meaning of this word, not the abused one) to do as they think it’s best (Always remembering a thing I really believe into: if there are still women who will allow to be treated as doormats, all other women will pay the price for it).

The thing is we get “distracted” with things like beauty standards, covers, antiwrinkle moisturizers and whatch out don’t trust DIY diets (I’ve googled some, there must be serious psychological issues with those who trust those diets, and this is another thing that needs attention), runways are looking for model above a size 0 (even though you never get to see them).

This is not the model war, curvy are better, no skinny are, blonds or brunettes, when there’s an economical crisis men like curvy women, when there’s economical boom men like androginous women.

Whatev! I say!

Maybe I’ve been lucky, I’ve never had big physical issues (the biggest one was when I was 7 and going anorexic but for other reasons, not self-image!), I’m quite near the “beauty standard” and I’ve always had positive examples before me: during teenagehood I was lucky to have male friends who often said things like “I like girls with glasses!” “I like those girls who have braces!” “That one’s too thin, that’s being sick, who likes a stick like that?” well, I’ve learned and understood that likings are subjective and usually they run in the “healthy/normal/average” department.

How do we make everybody understand it? How do we make all the girls understand it too? How can we wake up in the morning, look at ourselves in the mirror and burst in a “Ciao bella!” without thinking “Blimey that pimple is still there”.

Gida said, wisely, that if a girl likes herself others will like her to, despite whatever “flaws”… if you’d like I can quote Liv Tyler who, when asked “In these last pictures it looks like there’s a bit of a belly, are you pregnant?”, answered “No, I like to eat”.

Other things that my friends said and that taught me a lot (even though they don’t know it) are these, and maybe you find these helpful too:

“If a girl knows she’s pretty and she acts it out she’s less pretty”, “Oh finally a girl who eats, usually they’re so stuck up always saying no to this and no to that” and “Finally someone who accepts a compliment with a thankyou! The others make you want to stop saying compliments, what the fuck they’re all no no no no”.

Ok, the point in HotLikeThis is to stop paying attention to external infuences and liking one-selves, but since it’s been ages we are bombarded with external messages (that go something like: shave-tone-curl-shine-polish yourself etc) I thought that changing these external influences from negative to positive might be a good starting point.

I’ll make a silly yet useful example: I have freckles, I’ve recently learned to accept them, even more recently to like them. It doesn’t matter how many times I’ve heard “But they’re gorgeous! I’d like to have them too! They give instant personality! They’re sexy! I’m so envious! They look so good!” and so on.

Small thing freckles, uh? But think about it… always talking inside a “healthy” optic… is that extra pound, that size less in the bra, that bone structure slightly bigger than your friend has, that not-so-cat-like eye, those way too straight hair… aren’t these any bigger than freckles?

Now that we put things in the same perspective, think this: why there is no compliment-sake to hold if we don’t like something in ourselves and yet we’re so fast to put anything we might like in discussion for just one comment?

I thought another thing about women, being, appearing &co.

I have a really nitid memory of a thought I had, I think I was around 11, I thought that if the only choices for women were “Being cute and stupid or smart and ugly” I’d have chosen being smart and ugly, therefore for years I felt (and I’ve been kindly reminded that I was) ugly (and I thought I was smart, uh? XD). Now, why do we have to fight ourselves, after all these covers, politics &co?

I’ve heard too many women complain about some orange-peel-like-skin and saying “oh well they’re all fake on the papers” and as soon as they got a chance they wasted breath on “That uglything needs to loose a hundred pounds!” or “Well, I guess that girl is where she is because she sold herself”.

I’m astonished. I mean, if I’m not close to a magazine cover I can have an opinion and if, maybe it’s because of DNA and/or a healthy lifestile or I just like myself, I’m close to that magazine cover I need to be a stupid bitch with no right to have an opinion? Again, why are we fighting off eachother?

Why we, the women, can’t accept the idea that there are tons of women in a lot of different shapes?

You think I’m talking easily from this point of view? I’ve been told that too: what are you complaining of? That’s right, I have nothing to complain about, I’m quite “well done” maybe also a little into the “beauty standard”… even though “you’re too pale, your hair is too long, your chest is too flat, you’re too thin” (no, I’m 55kg for 170cm, I’m fine thanks, I like myself paperpale, I like myself longhaired, so what?) but this is a fundamental mistake too: we all face self-image issues, we all have things we don’t like about ourselves and we have to learn to accept and like them (have you ever noticed that usually the girls that undergo the most invasive plastic surgeries are the ones that are so cute originally? Have you ever wondered how insecure they must be?), but most of all let’s stop complaining and let’s start thinking we’re all entitled to have an opinion. If there are women who think other wome should shut up about image-issues, what about all the other topics out there?

On this note I’d like to link you a song by Emilie Autumn, it’s “Thank God I’m pretty” which is not self celebrative, on the contrary, it’s quite ironical, a sort of manifesto. I’ll highlight the most significant lyrics

Thank God I’m pretty

The occasional free drink I never asked for

The occasional admission to a seedy little bar

Invitation to a stranger’s car

I’m blessed

With the ability to rend a grown man tongue-tied

Which only means that when it’s dark outside

I have to run and hide can’t look behind me

Thank God I’m pretty

Thank God I’m pretty

Every skill I ever have will be in question 

Every ill that I must suffer merely brought on by myself 

Though the cops would come for someone else

I’m blessed

I’m truly privilaged to look this good without clothes on

Which only means that when I sing you’re jerking off

And when I’m gone you won’t remember

Thank God I’m pretty

Thank you God

Oh, lord

Thank you God

Oh, oh and when a gaggle of faces appears around me

It’s lucky I hate to be taken seriously 

I think my ego would fall right through the cracks in the floor 

If I couldn’t count on men to slap my ass anymore

I know my destiny’s such, that I’m all stocking and curl

So everybody thinks that I’m a fucking suicide girl

Thank you God

For the occasional champagne I never asked for

The occasional admission to a seedy little bar

Invitation to a stranger’s car

I’m blessed

With the ability to rend a grown man tongue-tied

Which only means that when it’s dark outside

I have to run and hide can’t look behind me

Thank God I’m pretty – grazie a Dio sono bella

Thank God

Thank God

Thank you

Thank you

Thank you God

I’ll add this: I think Emilie Autumn is a beautiful woman, the image she offers the audience, the music market etc takes advantage of her looks, her scene appearance, and I think she’s entitled to that, her beauty is an added value (I generally think that beauty is an added value, though subjective and mostly topic for another post!). Of course if she had only that to offer she’d be the Nth popstar who cannot sing and is just posing there, but this girl sings, plays the violin and the piano, composes her songs, writes her lyrics, records, arranges, mixes and masters all her albums, she sews her costumes, she designs her stages, she organizes her concerts since her label is her label, she founded it to promote her art.

If I stopped at her appearance and I thought of her as “a fucking Suicide Girl”, to use her words, I wouldn’t have found out all this, but I’ve listened to her songs, her musics, her lyrics and I’ve found plenty.

A very last thing in this uber long post (but this topic flames me up… ah it flames me up, and it was probably a bit disconnected, I’ve jumped from this to that, but I’ve got so much to say!) I’d go back “in topic”: how do you become HotLikeThis, how do you feel hot today.

Liking yourself, ok the answer is easy it’s translation into practice it’s a little harder. Easy exercise: do you remember those envious school mates who looked at a girl, who wasnt’ exactly like a covergirl, being all happy with her beau while they stood there wondering “How can a girl like that have a boyfriend?”. Well now, visualize them, listen to them and answer this.

Probably because “a girl like that” didn’t give a fig for what others thought of her round belly, her notsoshiny hair, the small eye or whatever they thought was wrong with her, because “a girl like that”, when she went out with friends (and she went out, instead of staying home whining) laughed and joked without being upstiff, she let others know her and her personality, thoughts and intelligence, she ate fries with everybody without fussing about calories (and if she were on a diet she’d just have a tea and cheers everyone!).

Basically “a girl like that” enjoys life and company and, in my book, someone who can enjoy life is far more intriguing and sensual that an upstiff person (another musical quote I can think of is “Future exgirlfriend” by Voltaire, “and I don’t care that you’re a model, no, ’cause let me say it’s clear to tell that your brain is shut to hell”).

In the end remember this: your body is a temple. Treat it likewise, cuddle it, keep it “clean and tidy” so that what’s inside has more comfort.

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10 thoughts on “HotLikeThis

  1. Hermosa

    Ci ho messo anch’io un paio di giorni a leggerlo tutto. La verità è che è così pieno di spunti e stimoli che è difficile rispondere o commentarne anche solo uno senza far torto agli altri. E vanno elaborati per bene. Una cosa ci tengo a dirla però: al di là della battuta, anche gradevole, io non vorrei mai che gli uomini fossero esclusi da questo ragionamento. Come dici tu stessa, hai capito certi meccanisimi proprio ascoltando i loro commenti 😉

    1. Euforilla Post author

      Non sono davvero riuscita a farlo più corto, mi spiace! Ci sono troppe cose da dire e non sono stata in grado di dividerle per argomenti e fare più post, perché è tutto collegato.
      Sì, gli uomini non vanno esclusi affatto (spero non si capisca una cosa così da quanto ho scritto…) anche loro possono aiutare e anche loro devono imparare :)

  2. Lanterna

    Faccio il bastian contrario: penso che noi donne siamo particolarmente attente al nostro corpo (il che è un male, ma anche un bene) perché il nostro corpo cambia di più di quello degli uomini. Ciclo, gravidanze, menopausa… son tutte botte che prendiamo in piena faccia, anche se la società vorrebbe che abbozzassimo. Gli uomini non vivono niente di simile.
    Cambiando così tanto, è facile non ritrovarsi nel corpo del momento. Poi, per carità, secondo me la soluzione non è sempre e solo lavorare sul corpo per farselo piacere, deve essere a due sensi. Ma non posso negare che mi scoccia non avere più le tette che avevo nel 2004 (sulle tette puoi lavorare quanto vuoi, ma non rispondono a niente). Poi, per carità, mi scoccia ancora di più che nel mio caso il detto “un figlio un dente” sia stato vero e che le gravidanze mi abbiano illusa di avere una folta chioma per poi farmi perdere i capelli a ciocche. E non parliamo di come si sente mia madre, in menopausa.
    Quindi da un lato direi che il nostro corpo si impone molto di più di quello maschile. Dall’altro direi di concentrarci ancora di più sull’accettazione di sé, perché le prove che ci attendono sono infinite.

    1. Euforilla Post author

      Beh non mi sembra una risposta da “bastian contrario”, anzi!
      Non mi sembra di aver scritto che “chissenefrega di curarsi del corpo”, o almeno spero non sia passato così, il “chissenefrega” va al rispettare standard impossibili e imparare a piacersi nel proprio corpo, per esempio imparando che ci sono ossature diverse come ho scritto io, e che il corpo femminile è soggetto a tantissimi cambiamenti come la gravidanza come scrivi tu :)
      M’è piaciuta molto la tua risposta, proprio perché porta al discorso un’altra esperienza, penso che il punto di “Fighecosì” sia anche questo: tante testimonianze diverse, tante esperienze diverse quante sono le donne al mondo, tutte però per imparare ad accettarci e, se è il caso e lo vogliamo davvero per noi stesse, muovere le chiappe per far cambiare le cose!
      Adesso aspetto anche il commento di Goddess che mi ha già detto che “non è d’accordo su alcune cose” ^_^

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