By MIA FREEDMAN
Taking a selfie without make-up will not close the pay gap (Australian women earn 83.5c for every dollar men earn).
Nor will it improve life expectancy for indigenous women in Australia (72 years compared to 82 for white women).
It will also not help brave girls like Malala Yousafzai to fight against the evil Taliban who violently oppose female education in Afghanistan.
WHY DID NOBODY TELL ME THIS SOONER?
Because I thought photos like this would fix all of that shit:
Since we launched our Mamamia Body Positive Project last week, the response has been overwhelming. Overwhelmingly positive. It’s something we’ve been planning for a long time as part of our ongoing campaigns around body image and it’s a broad, long-term project of which last week’s make-up free selfie challenge is merely one aspect.
Not everyone is a fan of our body positive initiative, though. Which is to be expected and in many ways encouraged. Debate is good. Here’s a sample:
HELEN RAZER: Fuck the shit that you are writing. Fuck your fucking assumption that most of us are as intellectually sluggish as you and are so fixated by the pain of Not Feeling Pretty that we cannot identify what needs to be done: radical change to our labour conditions. We do not make change by asking for praise about our twats, mams or makeup-free faces. To pretend that there is ANY benefit—even at the cultural level—in appeasing our own vanity is hypocrisy of the worst order. All I see, in the case of the Body Positive campaign is the desire of silly women to commodify themselves.
CLEMENTINE FORD: I’m at a loss to understand how a body image campaign, however well intentioned it might be, can tackle the complex issue of women’s relationships with their appearance by asking women to focus on their appearance – particularly when it just creates another standard of comparison between those participating.
There has to be a better, sounder, more intelligent way to move beyond these essentially vanity driven, privilege ridden exercises and prioritise a value in ourselves that has nothing at all to do with how we look. ….The exhaustion of thinking about ourselves all the time cannot be solved by hosting make-up free days or campaigns that focus on rejecting beauty regimes.
LANA HIRSCHOWITZ: I look at the galleries of makeup free woman and find the whole thing a little sad. It’s like a beauty contest but instead of the swimsuit competition it’s like some kind of “freak show”.
BRONWEN CLUNE: What lesson is this sending to anyone other than what we already know – that a women’s value is defined by her appearance, a value we derive at from an accepted set of norms? Is taking a photo without make-up and posting it on Twitter really an act of bravery for women, as many have suggested it is? Try telling that to Malala Yousafzai.