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Hey, fat girl! Shrink!

Spas are supposed to be relaxing, luxuriating experiences. I have personally never been to one, but from what I hear, you get pampered, massaged, relieve stress, and the like. You know what I didn’t know was a part of the spa experience here in New York, where I live? Being told you’re fat. And that… Continue Reading →

Six Weeks to OMG You’re Totally Insane

As a New York City commuter, I am privy to a whole host of crappy advertisements that plaster the subways and buses of our public transportation system. Inevitably, this includes ads that try to entice me to buy all manner of junk food, watch a ton of terrible television, and buy the latest pop-health book…. Continue Reading →

About Face doc: Want to hate yourself? Try modeling.

“I don’t think there’s any 15-year-old girl that will turn down the chance to be called beautiful. You don’t realize at that point that you’re also going to get called ugly,” says Paulina Porizkova, talking about being discovered as a model, about halfway through the new documentary film About Face (no relation to this blog… Continue Reading →

Objectification—it’s not just for women anymore!

I’ve found myself split before on the topic of male objectification, for the simple reason that men and women don’t occupy equivalent positions of power. When advertisers and filmmakers present women as sexual objects, those representations exist in a world where women are disadvantaged socially, professionally, and politically. Sexualized images of women contribute to an overall… Continue Reading →

Fat shaming: The judgment’s in the jargon

Fat-shaming, like sexism, takes many different forms. Rarely do we hear blatant declarations that “fat people are ugly/lazy/etc.” With the dialogue of “health” currently trending in pop culture, it becomes easier for advertisers, writers, and producers to integrate the language of fat shaming into their finished products under the guise of appropriate diet and fitness…. Continue Reading →

Ring in the new year without body shame

The New Year is upon us, and with it comes the pervasive, and often heavily marketed, promise of a better tomorrow. About 40% of American adults make at least one New Year’s resolution. Goals range from drinking less to reading more books, but unsurprisingly, in our body-conscious culture (in which rates of both eating disorders… Continue Reading →

“Slip into a size sassy” and other bad advice from Special K

Some businesses relish in funny, clever, and creative advertising. They take pride in their wit and ability to connect with consumers, making them feel connected to and appreciated by the brand. In short, they have respect for the people they hope will come out and buy their products. Using that reasoning, Kellogg’s may not fall… Continue Reading →

The Biggest Loser tempts disordered eating

We’ve written about the weight-loss reality television show The Biggest Loser before here on the About-Face blog, whether it’s the scariness of trainer Jillian Michaels or the reports of previous contestants developing eating disorders after the show. Recently, About-Face received an email from a concerned The Biggest Loser watcher in Australia. She was disturbed by… Continue Reading →

Want to lose weight? Quit dieting.

“Hey, you there,” the emaciated, blond model calls to you from the magazine cover. “Want to lose those cottage-cheese thighs and slim your flabby arms? Well, just follow these five easy steps and you’ll have the body you want in no time!” Actually, no, you won’t. According to new research, a negative body image can… Continue Reading →