• Private XV | Naked •

• Private XV | Naked •

I guess you can see what today’s Private post is about – well, it’s not about literally being naked, but the real #nomakeup without exceptions. No foundation, no concealer, no mascara, no filter. Because this world needs to see more naturalness, more realness – and less “perfection”. The picture above was taken right after removing my make-up and I felt beautiful at this moment. The ones below show my happy self after taking a shower (yup, these are selfies and the sun was shining so brightly I couldn’t help but take some shining pictures!). :)

To be honest, today’s post is not a favorite thing for me to do because I love make-up, I’ve loved playing with it since I was a little kid, and I love wearing it to make myself feel ready to face the world. I love showing me like this, all made up. It sounds pretty dramatic, I know, but make-up is kind of my cocoon when I want to feel great and beautiful. And this is a fact that actually makes me a bit sad – because we’re all beautiful without make-up. We don’t need to hide behind several layers of BB Creams and powder, behind shimmering eye shadow and the perfect “cat eye” liner. And yet people expect a woman to wear make-up – because that’s what a woman’s supposed to do. A woman’s supposed to be pretty. If she isn’t/doesn’t wear make-up, she “doesn’t care about herself” and “isn’t interested in looking good”. Brands sell stuff to make you “shine bright like a diamond”, give us the “fake lashes look” and plump up our lips to be “kissable”. Celebrities post their #wokeuplikethis pics on Instagram and simply “forget” to mention the one-hour routine with their make-up artists before posting a selfie with the hashtag #nomakeup (but hey: it’s really not that easy to achieve a natural-looking make-up, it’s even harder to do than smoky eyes!). But why lie to us? Lie to ourselves? Because women need to look pretty?

With today’s post I want to contribute to the real #nomakeup thing – because I like myself like this. I go out like this and I love my face without make-up (as much as I love the routine of putting on all these products and seeing the final result – it’s just so fascinating!). This is me at my purest.

#nomakeup

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• Private XIV | My Body – My Rules •

• Private XIV | My Body – My Rules •

I’m not growing tired of writing these posts, repeating my message and hopefully reaching as many people out there as possible. My message consists of many parts – these are only a few:

“Love yourself. Wear whatever you want, whenever you want. Don’t judge others based on their appearance. Accept yourself and accept others. Don’t let others get you down.”

I’m currently feeling pretty disturbed by a few things that are happening. For example there was an H&M campaign not much time ago. Let’s not talk about the stupid marketing strategy (“Oh – feminism is trend, so let’s do an ad and pretend we’re cool and care about women and their rights and feelings, like working with plus-sized models but removing our plus-size selection from all our stores!”) but the reactions. I felt extremely enraged when I read the comments on diverse pages where the video was shared, especially on Facebook.
Let me just quickly explain what happens in the video: there are women. Women of all kinds, they’re different. There’s a plus model dancing in underwear in front of her mirror. A very muscular woman. An androgynous woman. Another one who cleans her teeth in the middle of a restaurant with the help of her knife as a mirror. And there’s a woman with armpit hair.

While you’d think that – as always – the fat woman will make everyone go crazy and full of hate, this time it’s the woman with hairy armpits. Because if there’s one thing that seems to be even more disgusting than a fat girl being happy, it’s hairy women. The comments I read were “gross”, “disgusting”, “unkempt” – and then there were others like: “Women need to shave themselves!”, “Hairy women aren’t sexy!”, “I’d never fuck a hairy woman!”, “I’m a woman myself and not shaving is so disgusting and not feminine!” and so on. So, the first few comments are simply stupid – why should body hair be unkempt? It’s natural! It’s actually not natural to shave. Yet we do so, cause we’re taught to do it. Some of us do it because they think it’s more hygienic. But seriously – hair isn’t “not hygienic” if you simply take a shower and wash yourself. Hair doesn’t equal smelly people. Hair doesn’t equal dirt. Body hair is absolutely normal.
But then there’s the second version of comments. They’re clearly sexist. And bullshit. And most of them didn’t even come from men. As a feminist, it makes me sad to read these words coming from other women. From those who should be supporting others. Those who know what it is and feels like to be a woman, how it is to mostly just be a body that is being judged by everyone and never good enough.

And a few days ago, I had to see the same kind of bullshit again – this time in a weird and totally stupid ad from a German online and catalog shop, OTTO, who collaborated with a well-known German designer, Guido Maria Kretschmer (whom I really don’t like because he loves to say insulting things about people in a TV show called “Shopping Queen” and everybody loves him because of that). The ad shows the designer with two dachshunds (and another woman, the main woman’s “friend”) and then the woman comes in, wearing a summer dress, twirling around and eventually throwing her arms in the air – revealing her armpit hair. The “friend” looks pretty irritated and the designer instantly comments that she should “leave the two dachshunds at home” and hands her a cardigan which she, obviously kind of ashamed, puts on as quick as possible – and they live happily ever after.

SERIOUSLY? It’s 2017 and we’re all fighting for feminism, equality, body positivity, individuality and so much more and yet there’s people thinking it’s cool to create such ads. Of course, you don’t have to think that armpit hair is beautiful, but you should accept that there are women who simply don’t want to shave just because our sexist society expects us women to be hair-free. Because it’s “not feminine enough” when we have hairy armpits or legs or arms or vaginas. Because as a woman, we are supposed to remove any unwanted hair, because it’s disgusting and not sexy. Wait? What? Who decided that this bullshit is the guideline of my life as a woman?

Some days ago I went to an amazing photo shoot with six other beautiful women and we were a happy bunch of diversity. Tall women, short women, an ombré of skin colors, skinny women and fat women (and if you want to say so – with me, even a kind of disabled woman, thanks to my diabetes, but I guess we still need to work a lot on featuring more “actually disabled” people for diversity stuff!). One of them – she’s so beautiful! – had armpit hair, and it may sound weird but it made me happy to see it. She was all “I don’t care” about it and when someone asked her about it, she told her that she hasn’t shaved since she was 15 years old. It made me happy to see a woman who’s free. Free of the oppression of what’s supposedly feminine. Free because she didn’t care. And it made me feel free too when I saw it. For a second, I thought about telling her what I felt, but then I realized: it shouldn’t be a thing. Why talk about it with someone who’s clearly decided to say “Fuck you, society – I’m doing my own thing!”? Right – there’s no need to talk about it because it is normal! Normal to decide for yourself what you want to do with your body and how you feel about it. Period.

P.S.: This also applies to many other looks of women, I just picked one of those which are obviously still used for public body shaming. Remember the Dove campaign I was part of? There was, for example, a very muscular woman – she’s absolutely great and I love how she mixes this super sporty and fierce look with cute or elegant dresses – and the comments were like “this isn’t feminine”, “a woman’s not supposed to look like this”, “this is ugly and too manly” etc. I guess there’s still a long way to go and many battles to fight against body shaming, sexism, lookism and our society’s stupid standards, but it’s so worth it and we should never stop standing up for each other! Even if we don’t choose that particular way for ourselves.

P.P.S.: About why I chose to pose naked for a public photo – yes, this time it’s definitely brave to post something like this where everybody can see me like this. It’s one big step further than just showing myself in a bikini or even underwear, but I felt like this picture was the best way to deliver today’s message. This is me, raw and unedited, in no way trying to be sexy or vulgar, just with my most private parts hidden, even though it shouldn’t be a thing to see breasts and nipples, but you know, it’s always better to keep that hidden on the Internet. ;) It actually wasn’t easy for me to decide to post this, but I kind of felt like – as with my beach body photos too – I want to be one of those who “give” you a natural body, a body that’s not photoshopped to “perfection”, a body with “flaws” like my hanging belly with stretch marks, my CGMS and my insulin pump, a fat body which is as amazing as a skinny body, as a muscular body, as a disabled body,… – just as a body. Yes, it’s scary to be online like this, but I’ve always seen my “Private” posts as a very honest and also vulnerable side of me, a side that wants to inspire others (nah, you don’t have to get naked now and post it, that’s not my intention!) because of my self-confidence and self-love, which should be absolutely natural for everybody. ♥

• Private XIII | Skinny vs. Stylish •

• Private XIII | Skinny vs. Stylish •

I’ve written one of my “Private” articles for the → sheego magazine for their “Klartext” (real talk) column. Since it is only in German, I asked if I could also translate it for the blog and my English-speaking readers. I’m curious to read your opinions on this article, so please comment! ;)

One of the topics I always mention on my blog is: wearing whatever you want. No matter if someone could think that it’s unflattering or not. In fact, the reactions are often mixed – especially when the outfit is very body-hugging and you can actually see that there’s a fat woman standing in front of you.

Fat women are always told how you can “cheat away a few pounds” with the right outfit, how you can conceal your “problem areas” and that actually, a black sack is always the best choice. Because black will make you look skinnier – we all know that!

Fact is: you will only find these typical “slimming tips” in the plus-size area. Here’s how you can let your bum look smaller, there’s how you can hide your tummy, that’s how you should wrap up your big boobs and if nothing helps: go for black. That’s exactly what the main range at local stores looks like. Non-colors in all saggy-and-dip-hemmed forms as far as the eye can see. But these are actually exactly the cuts that won’t hide but simply make you look shapeless – and therefore they’re the actual unflattering clothes. But that’s not what I want to talk about today.

Flattering = look skinny/skinnier than you are
Unflattering = oh no, you can see that I’m fat!!!

I’m asking myself: why do we always have to dress ourselves in order to look skinny? Who decided that the number one purpose of clothes is to make us look as skinny as possible? Why do some self-proclaimed styling experts keep advising me on how to best conceal myself (by the way – “conceal” is a word I’d never use voluntarily!)? And who decided that this is what I want?

I don’t want to hide myself just because that’s the perception of “flattering”. I totally understand that there are many women thinking exactly the opposite – and that’s absolutely okay! We decide for ourselves what makes us feel good – and that’s what matters. Freedom when we choose what we want to wear. And that’s the freedom we shouldn’t forget: some feel great in concealing, others in figure-hugging clothes – accepting each other and not judging the others’ taste is the key!

But as a blogger who presents her own style regularly, I keep being confronted with the word “unflattering”, especially when my outfits are shared on other pages, because that’s where people aren’t open and ready for fat women being stylish – unfortunately! This stupid word mostly comes up when my look reveals that I’m fat. That is when I’m wearing tight clothes. Clothes which show what’s there, nothing more, nothing less. Especially fat women themselves are simply not used to seeing that and automatically switch into “that’s a no-go!” mode. Mind you, that’s mostly not even their own opinion but the one they’ve always learned and been forced to have as a fat woman – “You’re fat, you need to hide that!”. They may even think that the outfit isn’t that bad, but they’re totally deadlocked so they simply don’t want to think it’s good.

And this is exactly what we need to get rid off. Fashion doesn’t have to be flattering. Fashion doesn’t have to make us look skinny. Pragmatically spoken: fashion needs to dress us. Please ourselves and not others, let alone prevent others from making derisive comments about us. We finally need to learn that it doesn’t matter what others could say or think when we wear what we want, what makes us feel good – no matter if it’s flattering or unflattering in our society. Stylish is what we make of it and how we feel while wearing it.

• Dove #MeineSchönheit | Get ready with me… •

• Dove #MeineSchönheit | Get ready with me… •

1 - Lu zieht an.®

Photos: Falko Blümlein
All outfit details will be available
in an extra post – coming soon! :)
In collaboration with Dove.

A short while ago, I already revealed on Facebook that I’m part of the → #MeineSchönheit (#MyBeauty) campaign by Dove. It’s a huge honor to be amongst these incredibly amazing and individual women, each one of them with their own kind of beauty, even though our society tries to make them – us – feel like we’re not really a part of it. You’ll never please everybody, I’ve already said that very often, and it is definitely not your number one goal. Your number one goal should only be this: feel beautiful for yourself. Because your beauty is your choice. You don’t have to run after an ideal of beauty or femininity, an ideal which is unreachable for most of us and which we really don’t have to chase after. It’s about yourself, your uniqueness, your character, about how you feel beautiful. So my message of today’s post in collaboration with Dove is:

“My Beauty, My Say.”

And since there’s an amazing video accompanying the campaign, please watch it before you scroll down for the rest of this post…

I can definitely relate to this strong message and that’s why I’m so proud to be a part of it. I’m → representing “being plus size AND fashionable”. Because it’s still an issue that people say you can’t be fashionable when you’re fat. You can’t be stylish with “a body like that”. “Fashion is just for skinny people.” And here I am – ready to prove them wrong. ;) Or at least inspire everyone to think it all over and forget these thoughts. Fashion is for everyone!

At the beginning of this post, you can see one of my “classic” photos of my outfit posts. Today, I want to do a “Get ready with me…”, show you how this look came into being and talk about how I found my style, my way to express myself through fashion – my beauty.

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