ARE WE READY FOR ‘REAL’ BEAUTY?!

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MY FACEBOOK page has gone mental over the past 24 hours.

I’ve never seen anything quite like it.

All because of this image. A powerful image that I decided to share.

Yesterday this photograph of Cindy Crawford popped up on my Twitter timeline and it was so brilliant, so brave, so real, I just had to share it with my readers.

Because you see this is no ordinary image. Yes it’s Cindy being ‘super’ but it’s very different to images we normally see of her. Because this one is untouched.

NO PHOTOSHOPPING.

Just Cindy looking magnificent, every inch the supermodel but with stretch marks, slight mummy tummy an’ all, on show.

Bravo Cindy. Bra-bloody-vo!

The image is apparently from a Marie Claire shoot. Sadly I can’t for certain say that it is totally real as I can’t find the original source. The best I could find out is that the image was used in Marie Claire last year. (For which country, for which edition I have no clue).

Before I posted it, I wanted to try and make sure that it was ‘real’ (as best I could) so I searched for images of the beautiful Cindy and I did find a few of her in a bikini on the beach and yes, low and behold, there she was looking very similar to the professional image, with a little mummy tummy, some stretch marks and a slight wobble here and there.

Still undeniably gorgeous. And still a total goddess but refreshingly real. Refreshingly normal.

I also remembered a quote she said years ago, which went something along the lines of; “Even I don’t look like Cindy Crawford.”

Powerful ey?

I can’t tell you how much respect I have for Cindy, the professional famous model, to do this. And how much I want to thank her, for taking away the fantasy for a wee while and showing us reality –  the real figure of a 48 year old supermodel who has had two children.

When I first saw the image on Twitter, I actually gasped. A loud, audible gasp. Not because I don’t think she looks fierce and fabulous (because she does) but because it’s SO real.

And my reaction made me realise just how brainwashed we actually are.

How even though the majority of us know and understand that nearly every image we ever see in a magazine or on advertising has been pimped up, airbrushed and preened to perfection, we still fall prey -myself included! – into thinking that some women actually look perfect.

Crazy isn’t it?

But are we ready for reality? And can we handle it?

Or have we become so accustomed to photoshopped images that seeing someone with their ‘imperfections’ makes us feel strange now?

Seeing Cindy like this made me feel empowered. It really did. In fact this morning when I glanced at my little mummy tummy in the mirror, I actually smiled to myself and thought “hey, if it’s good enough for a super model, it’s good enough for me!”

But that’s not to say I want all fantasy to be scrapped. I love glamour and think the world would be a sadder, duller place without it.

Make up, flattering lightening, talented photography and a little airbrushing (to remove a spot or even out skin tone) is absolutely fine by me.

But yes, I want more reality. I want my daughter to see more reality. And I want the intense level of fakery to stop.

Ultimately I want to see women more as they are.

Because I believe it will take the pressure off. Because I believe that it will enable more women to look at their own bodies with pride and love.

Because I think reality is beautiful and it’s time the media stopped trying to make us all feel like failures. (Even the ‘supers’).

This photograph of Cindy shows that reality – with all of it’s flaws – can be just as glamorous and actually more fabulous than anything we come across which is photoshopped to death.

So yes I think fantasy has it’s place in our lives but not to the extent that we find ourselves forgetting what ‘normal’ actually looks like.

Cindy may not be ‘perfect’ in this image but my goodness she sure as hell screams confidence.

“THIS is who I am” it says.

And guess what? People LOVE it.

——-

*UPDATE  12/02/15 – The image has now been removed from  my page as I simply could not keep up with the activity or notifications! At last count, it had received over 4.5k likes and over 1.1k shares in less than 36 hours. (Bonkers). I think that answers my question perfectly… (Thanks to everyone who commented, liked and shared it!X)

With love,

Kate

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30 Discussions on
“ARE WE READY FOR ‘REAL’ BEAUTY?!”
  • I love the way I look, for the most part. I pretty confidently wear clothes ‘I’m not supposed to’, because I’m comfortable in my skin. I’m also painfully aware that I would probably viewed as ‘too fat’ for the denim hotpants I enjoy rocking, and my hips are a teeny bit too wide for figure-skimming dresses. This sucks, because it is basically what we’ve conditioned tbelieve due to the over-perfecting of images in the media.

    I once worked with a guy who met Beyoncé, and he told me her legs were fat. What?! That woman who sings and dances (aamongst other things) for a living has fat legs? Please.

    I am so concerned about my sons growing up to view women with this stupidly critically eye. Even worse, this disease may have spread to men by the time they are adults, and they’re obsessing over their looks as much as women currently do.

    S**t undoubtedly needs to change. You’re right. Photoshop has it’s place, but moderation has got to be the key.

    Xx

  • God this is such a breath of fresh air!!! She looks magnificent. And brave. To stick her supermodel head above the Photo-shopping parapet and say “THIS IS ME” – wow. Kudos to her.

    Best,

    Stephanie

    • Isn’t it Stephanie?! And I love her pose and the way she is ‘revealing’ her true beauty in it. It just screams: “I’m FABULOUS!” X

  • What an incredible image! Enormous respect to Cindy Crawford for using her position and power to insist on the use of an untouched image! You are right, there needs to be a balance of what we and our children see. I do think that we have a huge responsibility in the home and in society at large in terms of the vocabulary we use. My mother never ever critiqued other women, and I learnt by example that women’s bodies were to be celebrated, not emulated. She never compared herself to any celebrities, and while yes, she did diet, I never felt that she was disappointed in any part of herself – and why should we be? We have born children, lived lives, we are all beautiful. Wonderful post darling x

    • Thank you Zaz. I’m with you, we have a huge responsibility as woman and mums to try and change things. To be careful of the language we use in front of our children (in particular) about our bodies and what we eat. Women’s bodies are beautiful and imperfect and it’s definitely time we started to celebrate them more. Thanks for your super comment – your Mum sounds like such a wise and wonderful woman x

  • This sort of thing really gives you a boost doesn’t it? Cos if it IS real, it means that — whilst I still don’t have her body — I’m not a gazillion miles away from it, as I was before!

    She was always my favourite of the Supers — in my teens, her image was EVERYWHERE — I didn’t realise, back then, that she’s only 6 years older than me!! Such an inspirational image — for women, young and old. It just goes to show that you should take the images you see in magazines with a pinch of salt… xx #SundayStars

    Caro | http://www.thetwinklediaries.co.uk

  • Wow that reaction on your Facebook page is mental and actually quite telling. The picture is shocking, like you say not because it’s awful but because it’s Cindy ‘freaking’ Crawford and we don’t expect her to look like this. I guess in our minds she will eternally be in her 20s with perfect hair and amazing abs. As you say, Respect to her for being so honest and allowing this picture to be published. I love her more for doing it.

    Thanks for linking up to #SundayStars xxx

  • Love this post Kate – you write so beautifully! I love this picture of Cindy Crawford and wish I looked that good now- let alone at 48 after 2 kids! I think you’re right we are so conditioned to see ‘photoshopped’ images that is is a shock to see a ‘real body’ -as a stylist myself I have seen/styled a lot of celebs pre-retouching and I know the amount of work that goes into photoshopping – its just a shame it has gone too far now! Who knows maybe this image will be a turning point?

  • Great post and all so very true!
    I read somewhere today that the photo was leaked without her permission and she hasn’t made a comment on how she feels about it – hopefully she feels great about it because she looks amazing and it seems every woman on the planet agrees!
    I too gasped when I saw it and then I felt strangely peaceful, I wonder what we’d feel like if all we saw were un-touched up pictures – I’m thinking we’d all feel much better!
    Xx
    #AllAboutYou

  • I loved seeing this shot as it is just so refreshing to see her looking so real. We do forget that the images we see normally aren’t real and I totally agree that there needs to be more of this,it would help all of us appreciate our bodies a lot more! Xx

  • Love this darling and adored seeing you share this on FB, so important that the reality of beauty is shown (and how stunning does CC look)-it really helps us all feel more ‘normal’ and reduces the very real pressure we all face, hugely. I really want to see more natural and normalised images of women in pregnancy too, such a fraught time for so many. Fab post as always. #allaboutyou x

  • I have seen this too and I think its beautiful! Its like she lifted something that a lot of us are carrying. Pressure. She lifted it from our shoulders. She is so awesome for doing this! And the magazine who is brave enough too to publish this is changing the world! #brillblogposts

  • Doesn’t she look incredible? ! I punched the air when I saw this post on your Facebook page because it speaks THE TRUTH – we all have our lumps and bumps and we all age and get a bit more saggy at the edges (yep men too) and you know what, who cares?! We’re still beautiful human beings – as CC clearly shows rocking her bad self – and we should celebrate our amazing bodies. Fabulous post Katie xx

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