Reiki for Anxiety and Eating Disorders

Holistic therapies are still treated with a degree of mistrust and incredulity by some health professionals, but when it comes to matters of the mind, we all know that extra stress is damaging and relaxation can be really effective as a complimentary treatment. Some improvements in health can even be down to holistic therapies – even if this is simply the work of placebo, surely any improvement is good, no matter what the reason is!

At the end of last year I was going through a very stressful time which had exacerbated my anxiety to breaking point. My mum said she had heard Reiki was good for anxiety and said it had actually helped a friend of hers – so I decided to just give it a go.

I really loved Reiki and it made an instant difference to the way I was feeling, not necessarily physically, but I was most definitely lifted mentally.

What can you expect?

It’s difficult to say exactly what you will get out of the experience ,and they vary from practitioner to practitioner – but my own personal experience of Reiki is that it is so deeply relaxing – like being almost asleep. My practitioner has a heated bed covered with soft, scented towels – so it’s a really multi-sense experience.

Even though its psychological and medical benefit may not be proven, I genuinely believe that Reiki has a significant place in the treatment of mental illness, for nothing else if not its calming qualities. I would really recommend it for anybody with anxiety disorder, depression, body dysmorphia or an eating disorder because for that time you are there, you are in a warm, comfortable bubble and if you are additionally spiritual you feel very safe and protected. Because it’s a non-contact therapy, it’s suitable if you have an eating disorder as obviously massage and acupuncture can be painful and dangerous.

I feel so uplifted and happy when I have had my Reiki, feeling positive as though I could do anything. It’s definitely worth a go!

Tips…

  • Find a good practitioner who you feel completely at ease with – as with any therapy or profession, there will be a select few who aren’t that great or who maybe just aren’t the right fit for you. If you’re not completely at ease with the person doing your Reiki then you won’t relax and you won’t enjoy it, so it is essential. Try to go with someone who has been recommended as I did – then you won’t be as apprehensive and there’s a better chance that person will be a good practitioner.
  • If you don’t like it first time, then don’t give up – try a different person. I did go for hypnotherapy once and the guy told me to ‘be a tree’ and ‘feel my roots’ – frankly I thought it was stupid. I’ve since heard that hypnotherapy isn’t always like that – so sometimes it’s important to give things another go with a different practitioner.
  • You don’t have to spiritual, but it helps. I’m spiritual, but not to any particular degree, and I still love Reiki and embrace it fully when I have it. In fact it’s probably made me more spiritual as a consequence.
  • If you’re not into ‘chakras’ and ‘energy’ and ‘crystals’ that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy and benefit from Reiki – just enjoy the relaxation of it. Reiki works on the principles of energy, Chakras and colour but if you don’t believe in any of that, then simply listen to the music, take in the scents and sounds and take benefit from being lay down in a warm, dark room for an hour. It can work wonders.

What are your experiences of Reiki? I’d love to hear from you if you have tried it!

smallersignature

 

Tough Cookie is a blog for support and inspiration during recovery from Anorexia. Eating disorder recovery can be tough – but so are you!

FacebookTwitterShare

Why I hate ‘Thinspo’ – and why I want it banned

 

When I see Thinspo or Thinspiration, whether it’s on social media or on TV or in magazines, it makes me physically shudder. Maybe that’s because it’s usually accompanied by an image of an impossibly thin person, all rib bones and protruding hip bones; maybe that’s because the connotation for it for me is far from innocent and in fact represents something very dangerous.

I’ve said this before on the blog but I have to say it again for the purpose of this article making sense – ‘thin’ is not healthy. Looking at people as ‘Thin’ and ‘Fat’ is like looking at everything in ‘black’ and ‘white’ – there’s always a grey area. If you fail to be categorised into either you’ll force yourself to fit – it’s human nature. Of course, not many people want to fall into the ‘fat’ category – hence the absence of the ‘fatspiration’ hash tag.

Some people are naturally slim and that is fine. We are all built differently, that’s what’s incredible and diverse and interesting about us as humans. This isn’t an attack on the naturally thin.

What I want to highlight is that ‘thinspiration’ encourages us to become slimmer than we are supposed to be; it shames us into thinking and feeling that we are somehow inadequate because we are not thin. For people with body dysmorphia, every single person they see is some form of this ‘inspiration’. Inspiration of how to be, how to look. Whether that’s hair, skin, height, or weight. This isn’t something which needs to be highlighted and then spread via Social Media.

When I look at images of celebrities and models and these so-called ‘inspirational’ images, I feel worse and worse about myself as a consequence. Hashtag or no hashtag attached, they’re inspiring me to obsess over how I look. They’re inspiring me to believe that I am somehow ugly or strange or ‘fat’. When I am none of those things, factually speaking, even though I believe that I am.

I advise fellow sufferers of BD and people with eating disorders to ration social media. I do this because of the huge exposure to this sort of thing – which consciously or unconsciously damages us and compounds our negative beliefs about ourselves. ‘Thinspiration’ wasn’t around when I was poorly – if it had been, I’d have been all over it. That is to say, my eating disorder would have latched onto it within no time and I actually think over-exposure to it would have made it more difficult for me to recover.

I’m anti #Thinspiration and I hope you can see that it is false and absolutely not how you ‘should be’. There are so many different types of beauty, which I try to celebrate here on the blog. You are individual – unique, and beautiful the way you were made. It might take time to realise it but for now start to see the falsehood in the media and know that it is NOT a reflection on you!

Who else hates #Thinspo?

smallersignature

 

Tough Cookie is a blog for support and inspiration during recovery from Anorexia. Eating disorder recovery can be tough – but so are you!

FacebookTwitterShare

Lip Balm Reviews

Being freezing cold all the time and living in a body which is depleted of nutrients, dehydrated and generally is struggling to survive, usually things we often take for granted such as moist mouth and lips completely disappear. Even if you’re well on your way to recovery your body is still getting back on its feet, and I found that my lips were very easily dry and chapped even a couple of years after my eating disorder. My circulation even now is ruined and I struggle in cold weather so a good quality lip balm is still a must in my beauty arson! It’s so difficult with so many products on the market to decide which ones are best. I’ve bought so many lip balms in the past and they’ve ended up sitting in my drawer unused because they are hard, too slippery or too greasy (I HATE Vaseline, eugh). Here’s my run down of the 5 best I found – to save you throwing your money away and heal those chapped lips fast!

  1. Palmers Cocoa Butter – Original Solid Formula

 Palmers-Cocoa-Butter-Formula-Jar-26294

Yep, it’s not exactly portable, and I apologise for this in advance! However it’s got to be one of the most hydrating, silky lip balms I have found and not only is it 100% natural it also smells/tastes AMAZING. Palmer’s do have a stick-balm range, but I’ve always preferred this and when I was a make-up artist I always had a tub of this in my kit, as for hygiene reasons it made it easier to scoop a little out with a metal spatula and apply it with my fingers than using a traditional stick balm. It’s moisturising without leaving a horrible greasy film on your lips and because it’s all natural you don’t have to worry about ingesting anything untoward if you’re applying it frequently.

  1. Aldi Lacura Lip Balms

ALDI-Lacura-Orange-and-Cranberry-Lip-Balms

I know people are often dubious about buying cheap supermarket cosmetics (that’s because I’ve always been one of them!), but not only are these such a good buy at 99p for three, they are fantastic quality and so moisturising. I bought them on a whim one day whilst I was doing my food shop and I’ve been so pleased with them. Just one lasts forever so you can imagine a pack of three lasts a fairly long time! The only thing with Aldi is that lines tend to come and go, or come once and then go forever – luckily this appears to be an almost constant line (probably owing to its popularity), but the flavours differ; the one I have is Mandarin but they do a natural one and also did a cranberry one for Christmas. They’re free from mineral oils and contain exactly the same ingredients as much more expensive brands – so they’re a super savvy buy!

  1. Bodyshop Almond Lip Butter

 almondlipbutter

These handy little pots are great for putting in your handbag and they have a lovely buttery consistency. Of course as with all Bodyshop products they’re natural and made with Fairtrade ingredients. I love anything almond, anything marzipan, so this for me tastes like absolute heaven. Not a fan? Not to worry! Bodyshop do a huge range of lip balms so you’re sure to find one to your taste – from fruity flavours like strawberry and mandarin to sweet flavours like chocolate, Shea butter and vanilla.

Any of your own to add? Please comment below!

smallersignature

Enjoyed Lip Balm Reviews? There’s more in Beauty here!

Tough Cookie is a blog for support and inspiration during recovery from Anorexia. Eating disorder recovery can be tough – but so are you!

FacebookTwitterShare

Moisturiser Reviews for recovering skin  

MOISTURISERECVIEW

Just like lips, (You can read my lip balm review here), your skin suffers massively when you’ve had an eating disorder. It’s dry, sore, flaking, tight; symptoms which are exacerbated by time spent glued to the radiator through the cold or in hospital. My skin was dry and cracked in places and I had horrendous chilblains on my toes (I still get those now!) and I really struggled to find anything which kept my skin hydrated for longer than half an hour. Here’s my top five body moisturisers – you’ll notice a few of them are butters and oils and most are natural, as I always think natural is best for your skin and overall health. Let me know if you’ve tried any and agree (or disagree!)

  1. Body Shop Body Butters

body shop

I already raved about Body Shop Lip Butters in my Lip Balm Review, but I couldn’t help but include their body butters too in this post. So luxurious and thick, but easy to rub in and quick to absorb, these body butters also smell AMAZING. As always, you can expect an all-natural product from Body Shop which includes fair trade ingredients. There are so many to choose from, but if you’re into warm scents like me, Vanilla, Argan Oil, Shea Butter, Almond, Cocoa Butter and Chocolate (to name but a few!) will probably take your fancy. Body Shop also offer these in lotion form so if you’re looking for something more portable, they’ve got it covered. The butters are very reasonably priced and tend to last a little while so they are great value for money and certainly a good investment for parched skin.

 

  1. Kiehl’s Crème de Corps

kiehls

Kiehl’s was a brand I’d never heard of until I started working in luxury beauty 7 years ago; and as soon as I tried this moisturiser I fell in love. It’s pricey, but a little goes a very long way. I think the warm, buttery smell is heavenly but I can imagine it’s not everyone’s cup of tea – they do in fact offer a fragrance-free version now for those who don’t find it as tempting as I do!

My favourite form of this product is the whipped body butter. It is so light and fluffy, almost like buttercream, and sinks into the skin beautifully. The lotion form is thick but spreads lightly and as with its creamy counterpart, it absorbs quickly so no waiting around in the cold bathroom wafting your limbs around waiting for it to dry!

 

  1. Original Source In-Shower moisturiser

original source

It may not be enough on its own, but I decided to include this anyway because for anyone wishing (as I do!) to limit their time out in the cold wilderness between the shower and their pyjamas, body lotions and creams aren’t always practical. Plus they can be sticky and greasy even if they absorb well – not everyone’s cup of tea.

These nifty products have been emerging over the past year following the introduction of Nivea’s In-Shower Moisturiser; I like this one because it has a really natural, fresh scent.

 

  1. Argan Liquid Gold Pure Argan Oil

 argan oil

I first met May, founder of Argan Liquid Gold, when I worked for a magazine a couple of years ago. With so many Argan products on the market (many of which tend to just contain a small percentage of Argan as an ingredient), her passion to introduce something which is pure and natural and 100% authentic, as well as Organic and Fairtrade, was so inspiring for me. Argan Oil hails from Morocco, and May is Moroccan herself, so what better authority on Argan Oil can there be??

Lots of people are more than dubious about using oils on their skin; but for parched skin oil can be one of the only emollients which effectively penetrates the layers of the skin and nourishes it more deeply. Liquid Gold Argan Oil sinks in very quickly, so it’s not greasy or sticky on your skin. May advised me to use it on damp skin as this enables it to be absorbed more efficiently – but doing this also means that you spend less time out in the cold bathroom slathering oil on yourself. Because it’s completely pure and natural, you can rest assured there’s no chemical nasties in there either.

This product is going to sound expensive (£60   a bottle, stay with me), but I use such a minimal amount that my current bottle has lasted since I first met May! Not only can this be used on your skin, it’s also an amazing facial moisturiser too so you are effectively getting two products in one.

 

  1. Laura Mercier Body Souffle

laura mercier

I know I feature a fair amount of these products on the blog but honestly, I love them so much and they really are amazing. The only catch is they are pretty expensive – and I can’t make an argument here for that extra expense other than the fact that I am IN LOVE with the smell of them which lingers for hours, and the moisturising qualities, which stick around for a few hours too! The lotions (in a tube) are a little cheaper and just as thick and creamy, with the same scent, so I think if you’re on a budget, there’s a lot to be said for purchasing one of these rather than one of the most expensive pots.

 

Let me know how you get on with these – I love to hear your thoughts as always!

Signature

 

Tough Cookie is a blog for support and inspiration during recovery from Anorexia. Eating disorder recovery can be tough – but so are you!

FacebookTwitterShare

Tough Cookie book update

You might know that I am releasing books about my experiences to help others who have gone through or who are going through an eating disorder – the first of which is called Tough Cookie! I’ve been posting updates on social media but I am so excited to say that I received the first draft copy of the book this weekend, which is now with the focus group and headed for final edits.

I’m so excited to share this with everyone. I genuinely hope that I have something to offer to help people and I can’t wait for people to start reading it.

Please continue to watch this space!

smallersignature

 

Tough Cookie is a blog for support and inspiration during recovery from Anorexia. Eating disorder recovery can be tough – but so are you!

FacebookTwitterShare

Before going ‘no-poo’ after an eating disorder – what you should know

GOINGNOPOO

I do a lot of posts on the blog about hair loss, because it’s something I get asked about a lot, as many people suffer from some sort of hair loss during or after an eating disorder. Understandably – it’s devastating losing your hair and when it happens you feel like you’ll do anything to ‘fix’ it.

Having recently regrown my hair from a fairly bad bout of hair loss last Summer, (not fully regrown, just a thick 3 inch fringe of baby hairs!) and finding recently my body is struggling with the combined effects of winter and my anxiety, I have been back reading up on the negative effects of using chemicals artificial entities such as Sodium Laureth Sulfate and Silicones which are widely present in commercial shampoos and are less than good for scalp health.

I knew this before, of course – I even bought a Morocco Method shampoo which was lovely but just didn’t have the familiar old gloopy consistency I knew and loved from a shampoo. I’m not very patient and have a very short attention span, so in all honesty I gave it a couple of washes and gave up, without giving it the time I’ve heard is needed to really go for ‘no-poo’. After I gave up I completely forgot about it and went back to using expensive chemical products!

I went on holiday with my beautiful friend Faye in October. We have very similar hair types – sleek, brown, difficult to get body into (she likes it that way, I don’t!) She lives in Spain, so when she came over I hadn’t seen her for a good few months. And her hair was amazing – so amazing in fact I couldn’t stop looking at it and messing with it and asking her how she’d managed to get hair like that. This was a role reversal for us because when we met years ago at college, she always used to ask me about my hair, which at the time was so thick and long (that’s how I know it’s not how it should be now!).

She told me that because of the hot weather and not having to see anybody in Spain, she was only washing her hair once a week. For the rest of the time, it was up in a bun. She hardly ever used conditioner and attributed the massive growth, beautiful condition and thickness down to a combination of the sun and no-washing. Now I can’t magic the sun to the UK (I can’t tell you how much I wish I could!) but I did immediately cut my washing down from every other day (3-4 times a week) to just once a week. Yep it hasn’t always been pretty but my hair is getting used to it now – and dry shampoo is my saviour on any particularly dodgy in-between days!

Coupled with this revelation, my recent research had frightened me again into thinking that maybe   using chemicals on my hair (and everywhere, really) might be harming my body in more ways than I realised, and I wanted to go further to getting back my beautiful college hair.

Google ‘natural shampoo’ and you’ll find all sorts. Google ‘no poo’ and you’ll also find all sorts – but mostly you’ll find a lot of people talking about Baking Powder (or Baking Soda) and Apple Cider Vinegar. Neither of which I really fancied putting on my hair! Baking powder just sounded like it would be too harsh, and the vinegar element had me worrying I’d be walking around smelling like a bag of salt and vinegar crisps.

I did a little more research and came across this excellent post by Kanelstrand. Basically, she found that actually, this method is not so good at all because baking powder is very acidic, even when dissolved with plenty of water. It’s especially one to avoid if you are suffering acute hair loss.

So what to do now? Well I googled natural shampoo (again) and found lots that weren’t natural and a few that were. Some of these were bars, like bars of soap – something I hadn’t thought of using since I was very much younger and had one from Lush and one from the Body Shop. These bars are 100% natural, so they shouldn’t damage your hair or scalp and also contain ingredients which should aid in combatting hair loss.

I’ve come to the conclusion personally that if you are only washing your hair once a week as I do, you’re virtually ‘no-poo’ anyway. If you can choose a shampoo which is as saintly as it possibly can be, but that you enjoy using, then at least that is better than washing your hair every day or every other day and stripping it with chemicals regularly. Korres, The Body Shop and Organix have natural, silicone and sulfate-free ranges so browse the internet and try a few to see which one is your favourite. You might already be using one! In between washes I also use Klorane sensitive natural dry shampoo – it adds loads of body, keeps hair soft and clean and is easy on the scalp and hair.

In my last post about what to do when you’re losing your hair, I talk about the best standard shampoo ranges on offer (which all contain chemicals – however some are highly effective). But if you do want to go down the all-natural route, you can read my updated ‘What to do’ post here. Let me know how you get on!

smallersignature

 

Tough Cookie is a blog for support and inspiration during recovery from Anorexia. Eating disorder recovery can be tough – but so are you!

FacebookTwitterShare

‘An Eating Disorder can happen to anyone’ – is this a helpful message?

I saw an awareness poster recently at a hospital for eating disorders this week, and I really didn’t like it.

Unfortunately I can’t find it online to share it with you, but it said ‘Aged 20-30? It could happen to you/ that doesn’t mean it won’t happen to you’ – as if it can be prevented or is a choice? Eating disorders don’t ‘happen to people’. They have causes – understandable causes – behind them.

An eating disorder does not discriminate, it’s true- but it is not your responsibility to ‘protect yourself’, like eating 5 a day in the hope you might not get cancer. Obviously we can try to ‘prevent’ eating disorders by perhaps having a complete overhaul of how we see ourselves and society’s immense pressure and perception of beauty – but even then, factors such as bullying, traumatic life events or distress and terribly low self-esteem simply can’t be accounted for. Yes, it can happen to anyone – but none of us know when or how we can be affected by a mental health problem, and sometimes even when you are in the thick of it you can’t identify that it is happening.

Instead, shouldn’t we be having posters making people aware of the signs of an eating disorder so they can spot it in themselves or a loved one? Making them aware of services, charities and professional help they can access? And more campaigns like the fabulous This Girl Can and no-photoshop petitions to improve our overall self-esteem? Posters making people aware of eating disorders, how they affect people and encouraging better understanding and empathy? Since eating disorders are still so misunderstood, and sufferers struggle to access help or get a diagnosis, I think this would be much more helpful. What do you think?

smallersignature

FacebookTwitterShare

Foods for Recovery: Cocoa

FFRCOCOA

Chocolate is something many of us love – of course for you, it might be at this stage something you have recently re-introduced into your diet.

Cocoa, a main ingredient in chocolate, is actually incredibly good for us, and I’ve listed it as a recovery food because it does have specific benefits for anybody whose body has taken a bit of a bashing.

Cacao (the proper name for it in its raw state!) contains Polyphenols, which have been shown to protect the heart and maintain healthy blood flow – two crucial things for anyone in recovery. Cacao also has a positive effect on mood – as it boosts two ‘feel good’ chemicals in the brain – serotonin and dopamine. You may have heard of serotonin, as some anti-depressants are known as SSRIs or ‘Selective Seratonin Reuptake Inhibitors’. Recovery can be tough (I don’t need to tell you that!), so any mood-lifters will understandably be a welcome boost. Cocoa has also been said to help with digestive complaints as it encourages the growth of good bacteria in the gut – another welcome recovery benefit.

Cocoa powder can be used in a hair mask to help hair loss – and you’ll probably already know that raw cocoa butter is great for moisturising skin and hair.

Raw, organic Cacao is the best form of cocoa to use as it is not roasted, therefore retaining the antioxidant qualities better – however I do sometimes use Bourneville or Green and Black’s.

A great, simple way to use cocoa is to mix it with almond butter and a little agave, sweet freedom, maple syrup or honey, then roll in coconut.

You can find more yummy high-cocoa recipes here in my book:

Don’t fancy making anything from scratch? Try OMbar – read my review here.

smallersignature

FacebookTwitterShare

Why BMI and Weight mean absolutely nothing

Need diet

The massive importance of BMI and Weight – one of the biggest myths of our time.

As I’ve mentioned before on the blog, weight is a number on a scale which essentially tells you what your relationship with gravity is. It doesn’t tell you anything else; it doesn’t take into account other physical or personal qualities. I wanted to expand a little bit on this though because I get a lot of people talking to me about ‘weight loss’ and when I explain why I disagree with that so much I’m often met with a lot of confusion and questions!

I think the main reason for this confusion is the conditioning we have all been subject to over the last 30 plus years, which has seen the idea of ‘weight loss’ painted as a positive and ‘fat’ as a negative.

Of course in the 40’s, there was an influx of adverts promising ‘curviness’ for ‘skinny’ girls, who were ostracised just as bigger women are nowadays for their ‘undesirable’ size. Doesn’t that just go to show the power of the media, and the consequent effect it has on society? Someone, somewhere decides what is ‘normal’ or ‘good’ and we all follow blindly as we are told to do. At the moment, ‘skinny’ is in, and as a consequence we have all become obsessed with how much we weigh, with fat as a rule avoided like the plague.

BMI has long been painted by health professionals as an accurate and reliable gauge of a person’s health, based on the correlation between their height and weight. Contrary to this, many will now tell you that it in fact does the opposite and tells us very little about a person’s physical make up and overall health. Here’s an example: take a body builder who is very lean but has a heck of a lot of muscle. Muscle is more dense than fat, so they weigh quite a lot. They are however lacking in height – meaning their BMI indicates that they are clinically obese. Yet this person does not have a scrap of fat on them – so how can they possibly be obese?

This outdated system lumps people into categories of ‘healthy’, ‘unhealthy’ and ‘really unhealthy’ on opposite ends of the scale.  Another example is a naturally slim, tall person whose height and weight indicate that they are drastically underweight and dangerously so. Yet this is simply how they are made up naturally – it’s impossible for them to put on any weight.

What concerns me about this reliance on BMI is that many people are being told they are ‘clinically obese’ when that simply is not true. It focuses us even more keenly on a number on a scale, and not the health of our bodies as a whole. More recently, worrying stories of children and young adults being berated for the product of their BMI results have emerged in the press, which of course is unhelpful to say the least at such a formative stage both mentally and physically.

 

This brings me back to ‘weight’ as a whole. I admit I weigh myself once a week, same time, same day, so I absolutely cannot sit here and tell anybody not to weigh themselves at all, even though in all honesty that would be the ideal alternative. I know people who weigh themselves incessantly; sometimes twice in a day. When you have body dysmorphia or an eating disorder, gaining one pound can alter your whole perception of yourself and how you feel for the rest of that day. Clothes feel tighter, imaginary rolls of fat appear in the mirror. ‘Weight’ means nothing. The weight of our bodies depends on many different factors and varies from hour to hour, day to day, week to week. Women especially are subject to daily hormonal changes and don’t forget the contribution of our digestive systems to how much (or little) we weigh.

So what’s the alternative? Whilst I don’t suggest that this is widely used and suitable for everybody, I think it’s better to look to more accurate techniques such as fat calliper testing to get a clear indication of someone’s overall health. This coupled with other investigations can really give a true picture of how a person is made up, and where. If you are carrying excess fat, where it is on your body is important, as this often determines whether it poses a risk to your health and also the cause of its presence. Not everyone who carries excess fat eats cake for breakfast!

Next time you find yourself at the doctor’s and they insist on working out your BMI, please don’t lose heart if it isn’t favourable. It is a vague indication, if that, of your health and physical components. Not only that, there is more to you than a number on a scale. You are a wonderful person on the inside, and as long as you are also healthy, that is all that matters.

smallersignature

BMIANDWEIGHT

FacebookTwitterShare

Small Steps – retailers begin to ban Photoshop

31a4334b134ca13897502734d510699f

This year has seen significant steps in reducing the false expectations of beauty we see in the media and marketing, something which I am very passionate about.

With so many retailers and brands under pressure to ban Photoshop, or at least reduce their use of it, in August this year, Modcloth became the first retailer to sign a pledge which promises not to use Photoshop. And when it does, it will add a label to the image making consumers aware that airbrushing has been at play. The bill is part of the Truth in Advertising Act, which aims to present a more realistic view of beauty and body image to women young and old in an increasingly critical and aesthetic society.

Debenhams also made progress this year by vowing not to airbrush their lingerie and swimwear models, as it emerged that girls as young as 11 and 12 were unhappy with their bodies and taking action to lose weight. Now campaigners (including myself) are hoping that other retailers will realise that each and every one of them has a moral obligation to ban airbrushing.

Founder of the bill, ex-advertising exec Seth Matlins  (who features in my last post about Dove Beauty), hopes the bill will be adopted by more and more brands once they see that consumers embrace it wholeheartedly, instead of peddling harmful false representations of ‘beautiful’ women.

‘Please be a part of the solution and a hero. Please consider that you are responsible for the side-effects of how you sell as surely as you are for what you sell,’ he says in a message to advertisers.

It’s heart-breaking for me that the rate of eating disorders, body dysmorphia, depression and self-harm cases are increasing year on year, and at younger and younger ages. The future for our children looks bleak if we don’t take action and change society’s view of beauty and the perception of ‘beautiful’. We also need to lessen the emphasis on appearance and encourage our younger people to focus on the things that really matter in life.

I can’t wait to see what progress next year holds for this bill, and look forward to seeing change soon.

Read Seth Matlin’s blog, Feel More Better, here.

Signature

FacebookTwitterShare