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You Say Tomato, I Say Tomato – #Droptheplus

29 Apr #droptheplus

The controversy surrounding the term ‘plus size’ was recently brought to a head by prominent names in the fashion industry, including Australian size 8 model, Stefania Ferrario, and others like Kami Crawford. These are just a couple of the women who have banded together to demand the elimination of the term, ‘plus size’ in the fashion and modeling world. The women contend that the name is not only limiting and insulting, but unnecessary. A model is a model; a woman is a woman – no more, no less, no matter her size.

#droptheplus

#droptheplus

However, other prominent names in the plus size fashion industry, like Tess Munster and Laura Wells, embrace the plus size label because it has allowed them to brand themselves and pick up lucrative niche, as well as, mainstream contracts, while spreading the message that beauty does, indeed, come in all sizes.

Tess Holliday and Laura Wells

While some industry giants, like IMG Models, claim to no longer separately label “standard” size models versus “plus size models”, the question remains – how do stores, designers, advertising campaigns, etc delineate what goods they have to offer if the term ‘plus size’ is retired? Will stores no longer organize their clothing according to size – which is actually done to benefit the consumer.

Who wants to wade through a rack of Junior clothes/sizes if you’re 35 with hips? And why wade through a rack of zero to twelves, if you are a size 18? In today’s convenience obsessed society, it seems ludicrous to do away with descriptive size information that saves shoppers time and money.

According to Jenne Runk, “the term ‘plus size’ is just a term used to describe a body type, like tall, short, athletic, curvy, or anything else. I don’t see anything negative about it, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with being called plus size. To me, it’s just a label. Some people call me plus size; some people say I’m not. It makes no difference to me. Some people call my hair brunette and some call it dirty blonde, that means as much to me as whether or not I’m called plus size. How other people describe me doesn’t define how I see myself.”

She continues to say, “I often refer to myself as a ‘large person,’ because I am, literally, large. I’m taller and bigger than many of my female friends. I simply take up more space; I’ve always been that way. I don’t care what the fashion industry calls me. If they want to call me plus size, that’s fine with me; if they want to call me a model, that’s fine, too. I’m not ashamed or afraid of my body type. I’m not ashamed or afraid of any words people might use to describe it.”

Plus Size Model Jennie Runk

Plus Size Model – Jennie Runk

Perhaps the problem lies in the perception of “plus size” women, rather than the term itself. If modeling agencies and stores transform their terminology to something with a perceived more flattering undertone (ie ‘curvy line’), will such a change suddenly radically transform the way society treats/views larger women?

While Ferrario’s frustration is understandable within the modeling world, since at a size 8 she is well within standard sizes, it seems her argument is more with the extreme standards set by the fashion world for models rather than the practical application of the term ‘plus size’ as a description for sizes above a 12.

Maybe everyone should just take a deep breath and remember the famous words of The Bard himself, “What’s in a name? That which we call a rose. By any other name would smell as sweet.”

Credits:  Quotes from models taken from this great article.
http://www.elle.com/

Essential Oils for Wellness

29 Apr Essential Oils for Wellness

There’s nothing sexy about feeling yucky, and it’s hard to feel confident when your body is tired, drained, and bloated. So don’t let all your plus size lingerie go to waste because you have a headache at the end of the day!

If you’re looking to improve your overall wellness, essential oils promise to transform your health without the side effects of prescription or over –the-counter drugs. So let’s take a peek at some of the top essential oils for health and wellness.

Essential oils aren’t new – in fact they have a long history of healing and romantic properties before the advent of modern medicine.

Cinnamon Bark Oil

It’s not just for baking! Cinnamon is a powerful anti -inflammatory and antiviral in its bark form. It also boosts brain activity and helps you fight off fatigue. Great as a digestive aid or to ward off traveler’s diarrhea, take a few drops of cinnamon bark oil a day with a glass of water. You can also use cinnamon in a sachet to scent your lingerie and underwear drawer, as it claims to have aphrodisiac properties as well.

Cinnamon Bark Oil is an Essential Oil

 

Peppermint Oil

The cool, minty scent of peppermint alone gives it refreshing, revitalizing properties at the end of a long day, but it can also relieve pain from stress headaches. Rub a few drops of the essential oils on your temples or the back of your head. It stops the pain without the bother of rebound headaches caused by ibuprofen, and it won’t upset your stomach. In fact, peppermint is also beneficial for digestion issues and the dreaded abdominal bloating.Place a few drops in water and drink, and your curvy silhouette is back and ready to party (possibly in a tightly laced corset)!

Peppermint Oil is an Essential Oil

Source: Shutterstock

Basil Oil

Does your skin look tired and sallow? Basil oil, when used topically, protects against acne and improves skin tone and brightness.Work a few drops through your hair for added luster and shine, too.
Basil Oil is an Essential Oil

 

Essential oils are worth investigating, but make sure you are buying from a reputable, natural source to maximize the benefits and ensure you aren’t getting any synthetic by products. They are also a highly concentrated substance, so do your research and make safe, informed choices if you choose to use them.

Stay tuned for part two of essential oils, you can pull out those sexy plus size lingerie, we will explore their use in the bedroom and matters of the heart!

Victoria’s Secret in Plus Sizes?

4 Feb

Free to Be You and Me?

Recently a petition has surfaced asking Victoria’s Secret, lingerie giant, to expand their product lines to include plus sizes. The petition, started by a plus size woman, has garnered attention online and across the air waves, but the questions that beg to be answered are:

1.  Does Victoria’s Secret have an obligation to sell plus size lingerie and clothing?

2 – Are they being discriminatory – one of the petition’s main points – or missing a business opportunity – the petition’s seemingly second main point by only selling standard sized merchandise? 

Let’s examine Victoria’s Secret obligation to market and sell a plus size line.

As long as free enterprise exists in North America, businesses have every right to control their product lines as they see fit.  Victoria’s Secret already dominates a majority of lingerie sales – with sales reaching 6.6 billion last year alone. Based on these numbers and the current price of Victoria Secret’s stock, it would seem that Victoria’s Secret is quite happily reaching and meeting the needs of millions of happy customers and shareholders.

So, back to the questions:

Are they obligated to sell to plus size women?
Are they being cruel and exclusionary if they don’t?

No, and here’s why.

As a business, they are meeting and possibly exceeding their current business goals, which only includes standard sizes. It isn’t personal, it’s business.   

Are they hurting their bottom line by not expanding and marketing larger sizes?

The free market is dominated by a set of economic rules. The first being there’s a cost to every benefit. A cost-benefit analysis is pretty standard when a company is determining whether to expand or redirect merchandise. I’m sure that Victoria’s Secret – a chain owned by the same company that used to own Lane Bryant – has examined the costs and benefits of offering plus sizes and has so far decided it’s not in their best interest….at this time.

At the end of the day, criticizing Victoria’s Secrets’ business decision not to offer larger sizes makes just as much sense as standard size women criticizing Lane Bryant in the USA for not offering styles in size 0 or size 1.

Businesses fill niches.  A business cannot and should not be expected to be everything to everyone. Plus size women have a myriad of fashion options such as clothing for fuller figures and plus size lingerie today that did not exist even 15 years ago thanks to specialty stores and the Internet.  

While there is still a long long way to go in terms of society’s acceptance of alternate beauty standards, taking issue with Victoria’s Secret for only offering standard sizes really isn’t one of them is it?   Their “Perfect Body” campaign – now that’s another thing!

Plus Size Model Tess Holliday Lands Major Modelling Contract!

30 Jan

Because Tess Holiday said no to fat-shaming, cookie cutter standards of beauty using the hashtag #EffYourBeautyStandards, she was able to say yes to a major modeling contract with MiLK Model Management in the UK becoming the largest model at a size 22 to ever land a major modeling contract.

Tess Munster - Plus Size Model

Tess Holiday refused to give up her dream of becoming an international model despite being told continuously she was too fat and too short to make it in a physically demanding and cutthroat industry where even plus size models averaged between a size 8-18. 

Tess Munster

Tess made a name for herself on social media sites by posting the hashtag #EffYourBeautyStandards, while posing in a variety of plus size lingerie and fashion-forward attire that showcased her size 22 curves and sexy personality.

The world took notice of this unabashed celebration of individual beauty and confidence, and in 2013 (the same year as her Instagram and Twitter campaign launched) she was named as one of the top 20 plus size models by Italian Vogue.  

Tess Holliday

The fact that she was only 5’5″ which is considered short by model standards and a size 22 was completely irrelevant!

Tess Holliday, formerly Tess MunsterRefusing to apologize for her voluptuous size and embracing fashion and sexy lingerie, Tess has inspired millions of other plus size women who have struggled to accept themselves in lieu of often painful and harsh social criticism.

tess-munster-babydoll-lingerie

Posing in sexy underwear and lingerie or sometimes something as simple as a girly, A-line sleeveless sundress, Tess’s fans also post photos of themselves modeling formerly “forbidden” items of clothing for plus size women, proudly stating #EffYourBeautyStandards and showing as much skin as they want.

So lovely ladies of all shapes and sizes, big and small – break out the sweet and sassy babydoll you have stashed in your top drawer or order that jaw-dropping red lace corset you’ve been eyeing online, and let’s celebrate our inherent sexiness and femininity as powerful, real women.

Congratulations, Tess Holliday! 

tess-munster-swimswuittess-munster-swimswuit2

Photo Credits:  All photos courtesy of:  http://www.tessmunster.com/

Beauty Comes in all Sizes – Plus Size 2015 Calendar

14 Dec

Curvalicious Canada is a company in the Greater Toronto area where plus size people can connect with like-minded people at various events and conferences.

Tracey Crosson is the mind behind Curvalicious Canada and she is currently working on a conference that she says will ‘inspire, teach and rejuvenate the plus size community’.

She along with Photographer Laurie Marshall also worked on a Plus Size Calendar featuring several ladies from the community.

curvalicious-canada-calendarTracy advised that the proceeds from the calendar will benefit two plus size charities:

  • The BCCA Body Confidence Canada Awards and
  • NAAFA the National Association to Advance Fat Acceptance Toronto Chapter.

To purchase the calendar or find out more about Curvalicious Canada, visit the link below:

Curvalicious Canada

DIY Beauty Secrets

13 Dec

We often get caught up in doing for other people and forget to take care of ourselves. Pampering yourself doesn’t require a great amount of time or money.  All you have to do is indulge in at-home beauty treatments with ingredients you probably already have in the cupboard or medicine cabinet.

This holiday season, create a personal glow that will rival the candles in the window and the sparkles on your corset!

1)  Lemon-Sugar Face and Body Scrub

For a fast and effective scrub:

  • Combine 2 to 3 cups of white sugar with ½ cup coconut, jojoba, or olive oil.
  • Add in two to three teaspoons of lemon juice and a teaspoon of orange or lemon zest.
  • Mix all the ingredients until combined.
  • Work the scrub into the skin in a circular motion, let rest for five minutes, and then rinse clean.

Your love is sure to appreciate your super smooth skin and natural glow when you model your plus size lingerie for a romantic evening. You can store the scrub in a mason jar, and with a little twine or ribbon, it also makes a great gift!

2)  Teeth Whitening (without the harmful enamel damaging chemicals!)

You are never fully dressed without a smile, right? So it follows that a great pair of sexy underwear or babydoll are best accessorized with a bright smile!

Simply mix together:

  • capful of hydrogen peroxide
  • a capful of baking soda, and
  • a pinch of pink Himalayan salt
  • apply to teeth with a Q-tip.
Let sit for a few minutes for two to three days in a row every other month or so, and you are on your way to a brand new smile to compliment your curvy physique.

3)  Coconut Oil Hair Mask

  • Warm up two to three tablespoons of coconut oil and work into your hair from roots to tips.
  • Use a shower cap or cotton fabric to wrap your hair against your head.
  • Leave it overnight.
  • Wash out oil in the morning with regular shampoo, and voila – the best hair day ever!

What are some of your favorite do-it-yourself home beauty secrets?  Share it with us below.

When Less is More

14 Nov

I recently received an email from a good friend espousing the wonders of a new fiber lash mascara. The pictures were admittedly dramatic.

Did I need this product?

Would my eyelashes forever feel skimpy if I stuck to the same old drug store brands I rotated between?

Was it worth the investment, and did I have the time to submit to a four-step mascara process just to ensure my lashes were 300% bigger?

As women we’re addicted to getting made up. Maybe it’s like putting on a different persona. With the right hair and makeup we are more glamorous, alluring – our flaws are hidden from the world. Often times plus size women feel extra societal pressure to present a perfect face.And what goes better with a bombshell black leather corset than red hot lipstick or extra-long flutter eyelashes with the ethereal babydoll lingerie you just purchased? A smoky eye and barely-there underwear – it’s a curvy girl’s ultimate boudoir look!

At its best, makeup is fun and fanciful. But does it ever become a chore for beauty mavens?Well, if you are wearing a full face of makeup for anyone but yourself, you may want to rethink your decision.

A UK study found that both men and women actually prefer a more natural look. While a bare face didn’t score as many attractive points as some makeup, both men and women rated the women’s faces that were not wearing full “going out” makeup as more attractive than the women’s complete looks for an evening out. When interviewed, both sexes still verbalized that more makeup was better, despite choosing images to the contrary.

Think about your own romantic liaisons. Were they evenings when you were made up to the nines or did they take you by chance when your face was much more natural?

Pair this with an earlier study that showed men actually preferred curvier figures than women thought they wanted, and could it be that we are perfect in our lingerie just the way we are?