More Than Your Seflie

Selfies — they’re everywhere right? A modern phenomenon. And whether we want to admit it or not, whether we take them to be goofy, show off our makeup or just because we’re bored (that’s me), we all take (and share) them now and then. And every Instagram like serves as a mini-confidence booster — but is that healthy?

In support of National Eating Disorders Awareness Week (February 23-March 1), Her Campus has been hosting a #LovingMe project, encouraging people (but young women especially) to share what they love most about themselves (excluding anything physical) on social media. I think it’s a great initiative to remind us we should be sharing more than our pretty faces.

What do I love about myself? I’m loyal (almost to a fault, but we’re focusing on positives here). I’m a good storyteller and good with words. I’m practical-minded with a creative streak. I’m good with my money. I’m nice. And you know what? There’s even more stuff that I love about myself  — I’m more than my body parts, whether I like them or not.

Which is why it’s so disappointing to see what the TODAY show has been doing this week with their “Love Your Selfie” series. The show’s intentions seem to be in the right place, as their blog explains:

Every day too many of us wake up unhappy with the way we look. TODAY wants to change that! With the “Love Your Selfie” series, kicking off Saturday, Feb. 22, TODAY will examine the obsession with body image and how we can join together to feel more positive about ourselves. TODAY’s anchors will take an honest and revealing look at how they feel about their own body image.

It sounds kind of great, right? I have to take issue though with how the emphasis is still placed on outward appearance. I much rather hear about what personality traits celebrities feature about themselves rather than listen to what they and the anchors are self-conscious about. There’s a time and place for that, and it takes guts to admit what your “imperfections” are, but NEDA Week is not that time — especially if it’s not balanced out with discussions on “inner beauty” and the like.

Ultimately, it feels like a missed opportunity, especially when the statistics TODAY shared about body image are so eye-opening: Read more

Link Love: Holiday Edition

Link Love

Ok, there’s nothing particularly festive about these links but if you already need a break from your family, I’m at your service!


As someone who is starting to pay off those student loans (only government ones, thank goodness) this Forbes story on a 20-something who worked to pay off nearly 100 grand in three years was both inspiring and overwhelming.

On the other hand, this blog post from Huffington on a student who graduated college debt-free was just infuriating. College wasn’t all that for me, but there is more to it than that paper diploma. (Or maybe I’m just jealous?)


The Winter Olympics around the corner, but before that comes the Trials, where this unexpected and inspiring Olympic hopeful will be competing.

Feminism & Media

From NPR, when it comes to feminism, who is considered a woman of color? As a light-skinned Latina-American, I definitely found this article interesting.

PSA: not all women share the same “female” experience — not even close. [h/t Harper Honey]

Surprise! You can fake a sleek physique on Instagram and Pinterest, no Photoshop required.

Or you could use Photoshop, like this photographer in these satirical ads criticizing the beauty industry. (See all the photos at Beauty Is Only Pixel Deep.)

According to the New York Times, if you’re planning on being an assistant in the magazine industry like The Devil Wears Prada, you better have a handle on social media. #TheTimesIsOnIt

Despite a very strong year for women in film, they (we) continue to be under- and misrepresented in film, even compared to television (and especially if you’re a minority).


Also from NPR, an interesting series on the afterlife of American clothes. Hmm…

Any good reads to share?

~ Sarah

International Day of the Girl

You know what’s awesome? Today is the International Day of the Girl Child, a day recognized by the United Nations to “recognize girls’ rights and the unique challenges girls face around the world.” It’s the second year the Day of the Girl has been recognized, and this year there is a special focus on girls’ education. This video explains why girls’ education especially is such an important investment:

That’s some scary stuff, but there’s good news too: you can help. Harper from Harper Honey has some great advice on how:

“The first step is to make noise and raise awareness. Tell your friends. Get educated by visiting sites like Day of the GirlThe Girl Effect10×10 / Girl Rising, and She’s the First. Bring screenings of Girl Rising, an award-winning documentary about the importance of girls’ education in the developing world, to your area or campus — if not, screen the Nepal Chapter for free. Spread the knowledge. Then, take it to the next level. Fundraise — whether it’s a bake sale at school or asking for donations rather than Christmas or birthday gifts. A little money goes a long way, and a lot of money goes much further.”

Access to education is an issue close to my heart. As some of you may remember, I spent my spring break on a service trip to the Dominican Republic volunteering with the Joan Rose Foundation, which provides a free education (as well as other resources) to impoverished Dominican and Haitian youth. As education is crucial to breaking the cycle of poverty, the Foundation works with both boys and girls, but today I’d like to focus on one girl in particular.

I fell in love with this little girl over the course of the week, and even though she was very shy and doesn’t speak too much, we shared many special moments together. All I wanted was to provide her with the same opportunities I have — the ones I take for granted each day — but the reality is that she’s a toddler who comes to school barefoot and in ragged dresses.

Today, I’m joining Harper and becoming a part of this conversation to support girls’ educations across the globe. Getting people talking is an important first step. Do it for Malala, do it for my girls at Joan Rose, do it for girls (and boys) everywhere.

“The question is not whether we can afford to invest in every child; it is whether we can afford not to.” – Marian Wright Edelman

~ Sarah