UPDATE: While we have never regretted running a story, there is always a first time for everything. After tuning in to the Today Show this morning to check out their #LoveYourSelfie series, we were painfully disappointed. While the anchors did one quick segment without makeup, they came back after the break, fully made up in typical, high-def TV, glamazon style for the remaining hours of the show.
In failing to deliver on their promise of a “No Makeup Monday“, the Today Show sent a much louder and more negative message to women (and men). We’re not sure if this was a network, producer or anchor decision, but it was an enormous FAIL! To proclaim to want to start a genuine conversation about unrealistic expectations of beauty and body image, and embracing natural beauty, only to then execute it with zero commitment to their own message is laughable. They ended this important conversation before they even got it started.
If you are tuned into the TODAY show this morning, you may notice something a little bit out of the ordinary with the show’s hosts. The morning anchors, who are usually glammed up and picture perfect, are on-air make-up free. The barefaced hosts are showing their natural beauty for Love Your Selfie, a weeklong series created to ignite a national conversation about body image.
The Love Your Selfie series will examine our cultural obsession with body image and how we can join together to feel more positive about ourselves.
According to a new TODAY/AOL Ideal to Real Body Image Survey, 67% of adult women worry about their appearance regularly – more often than finances, health, relationships or professional success. The survey also reveals that women spend an average of 55 minutes per day on our appearance – that’s 335 hours every year, or a 2-week vacation spent doing nothing except grooming and getting dressed. Just think about what we would accomplish if we put our energy elsewhere!
Throughout the week, TODAY will host interviews with influencers and celebrities about their personal struggles and insecurities with body image, as well as share the stories of people who are transforming the traditional definitions and standards of beauty.
“What’s vital is being confident and celebrating who you are, your capabilities, your passions, your quirks and contributions to society.”- Pia Guerrero Among those scheduled to participate are Jane Seymour, Cameron Diaz, Maria Shriver and the First Lady, Michelle Obama.
We’re all aware of the unrealistic expectations about body image that have become so ingrained in our everyday lives, and it’s not just affecting women; how we feel about ourselves and how we act, directly affects the young women in our lives too. We asked Pia Guerrero, media literacy expert, with a focus on body image, and the co-founder and editor of Adios Barbie, to weigh in on the potential effectiveness this series can have on the body image issue.
“The Love Your Selfie series is promising, for it marks the first real effort by the mainstream media to raise awareness around the detrimental impact and prevalence of poor body image in people, especially women and girls. I love the show’s plan to peel back the layers of their correspondent’s and hosts own insecurities. However, with that said, what I fear is that the conversation will support the idea that accepting our flaws is how we redefine beauty, instead of revealing that the concept of beauty itself is a construct and completely subjective. In essence I hope that the series will empower viewers to recognize that no one has physical “flaws” and that feeling “beautiful” is not the answer. Rather, what’s vital is being confident and celebrating who you are – your capabilities, your passions, your quirks and contributions to society. For that is what truly draws people in and ultimately determines your attractiveness and reflects your value.”
TODAY is encouraging viewers to join the conversation and celebrate every shape, size and age by sharing “selfies” on social media using the #LoveYourSelfie hashtag. Select photos will be featured throughout the weeklong coverage on-air and online. You can submit your #LoveYourSelfie here.
Let’s use this opportunity to embrace our individual selves and and work towards turning our negative body image talk into positive action, #LoveYourSelfie!