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When Curvy Appreciation Turns to Objectification

By Lindsay Kite, Ph.D. We don't ever get too pumped about the latest viral body positivity stories, because we've found that if it's quickly embraced by the masses, it probably doesn't challenge the status quo in any substantial way. The story about the man gaining...

Modest is Hottest? The Revealing Truth

By Lindsay & Lexie Kite, Ph.D. Originally posted Nov. 2011 and updated every time the modesty/dress code debate makes headlines! Current version: June 2017. Women and girls are more than just bodies. We all know that, right? Well, you wouldn’t know that...

Not Picture Perfect? Bounce Back from a Body Image Blow

By Lindsay Kite, Ph.D. 1 New Notification:  [Someone] added a photo of you. Oh wow. It's not good. It's so not good. Whatever the reason -- bad angle, unflattering position, weird filter, googley eye, whatever. You HATE it. We've all experienced this one way or...

How I’m Winning the Body-After-Baby Battle

By Lexie Kite, PhD My amazing baby girl, Logan, turned one this week. Having been fed a lifelong diet of how humiliating “bodies after babies” are and how important it is to “get your body back” after birth, I was not thrilled about living a life with a post-baby bod....

When “You Look So Skinny!” Does More Harm Than Good

By Lexie Kite, Ph.D.  (Originally posted in Feb. 2014) POP QUIZ: If you know a girl or woman who has lost weight but you don't know how or why she did it, what do you do? A: Compliment, compliment, compliment! The more praise about her fab new bod, the better. B:...

Stop Cheering for the Objectification of More Women

By Lindsay Kite, PhD, and Lexie Kite, PhD Simone Biles and Aly Raisman, Olympic gold medalist gymnasts and celebrated role models for young women, are featured in the upcoming 2017 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue. This is nothing to cheer about. This is not progress...

Help us #CuttheCarls Because Women are #MoreThanMeat

(This was originally posted in August 2014. We're republishing as a refresher following Donald Trump's selection of Carl's Jr. CEO Andrew Puzder as U.S. Labor Secretary. See Puzder's very telling quotes about objectification below. See Lindsay's remarks in the Boston...

Your Body is Not a Before or an After

“Before and after” body transformation photos used to be relegated to late-night infomercials or old magazine fad diet ads, but now you can’t click on IG or FB without seeing the dramatic comparison pics from your old friend selling those shakes and skinny wraps or...

Are Body Positivity and Fitness Compatible?

If you want to improve your body image, but you have trouble prioritizing regular exercise ... join the club! Lexie and I (BR co-directors) decided this week to renew our dedication to fitness. Not the "getting a bikini body" or "get your body back" kind of fitness,...

From Body Anxiety to Body Image Activism: Our Story

We are Lexie and Lindsay Kite, PhD, identical twins and co-directors of Beauty Redefined, a nonprofit working to help girls and women improve their body image and self-worth as they wade through harmful cultural ideals. We want to tell you about our (very twin-like)...

Podcast Interview: Empowerment, Body Positivity and the Internet

Some Backstory: I (Lindsay Kite) am an avid follower of Meghan Murphy, and after being particularly frustrated about sexualized imagery being embraced as the ultimate in empowerment for women, and then particularly refreshed upon reading Meghan's posts at Feminist...

Empowering or Objectifying: The Clashing Camps of Body Positivity

By Lindsay Kite, PhD Because our culture teaches that women's bodies and faces determine our worth, and that only certain rare bodies and faces are worthy of anything good, people who want empowerment for women are stuck in two conflicting groups.  The first group is...

Body Image Baby Steps (and an announcement!)

One of my most important missions in life is to help girls and women understand their value and rise up in the face of objectifying ideals that come from media and other people. Being an advocate for women feels like something I am called to do, and I've spent the...

This Post is About Volleyball Shorts.

Here’s a fun game: Google Image search your local school’s men’s volleyball team. Now Google Image search the women’s volleyball team. Now ask yourself why the guys are drowning in all that extra fabric!? We’re concerned about the men here. All that extra shorts...

Well-Behaved Women Seldom Make History. Let’s Misbehave!

"Well-behaved women seldom make history." Many big industries want us to behave. They want us to be live “stylishly ever after,” they want our “girl power” to come from marketing that phrase on our push-up bras, they want our health to be defined by how good we can...

Female Objectification: Who’s Really to Blame

Women are constantly being dehumanized and reduced to objects to be groped, harassed, catcalled and evaluated -- and some men feel comfortable doing all of those things and then boasting about it, or deny it by mocking the appearance of the women as unworthy of their...

Watching Women Want

Written by Autumn Whitefield-Madrano of The Beheld I’ve been watching a lot of the Women’s World Cup, with a fervor that surprises even me. I’m an unlikely soccer fan to begin with; sports, personally speaking, have traditionally been something to be avoided and/or...

Invisible Women Over 40: Anti-Aging and Symbolic Annihilation

If you lived on another planet and everything you knew about humans came from mainstream media, you’d be absolutely shocked to find out a couple of facts: Female humans do not die or crawl into caves to disappear at age 40 while male humans live much longer, active...

What Will You Gain When You Lose (Your Scale)?

How often do you come up with health goals that often have a lot to do with how you look and little to do with real health and happiness?  Profit-driven companies are busy bombarding us with slimy weight-loss slogans like Cheerios' "More Grains, Less You" and Special...

Your Body is Powerful. Use it as an Instrument, Not an Ornament.

Our research points to one particularly awesome way to experience real empowerment, decrease self-consciousness, and embrace your body as your own – not as a decoration for everyone else to gawk at. It is through the power of your body. … But not the way the rest of...

Dying for A Tan

Two years ago, we at Beauty Redefined published a popular post arguing that the soaring increase in the number of young women with skin cancer is a beauty issue above all else. It has to do with young, light-skinned women believing tanned skin is equivalent to looking...

Food, Fat and Fear: Recognizing an Eating Disorder and Recovering

In the U.S., 20 million women and 10 million men suffer from a life-threatening eating disorder during their lives. Many of those millions will never seek help and will die from the disorder. The No. 1 contributor to the development of anorexia and bulimia is poor...

Running from Self-Objectification

When we grow up surrounded by appearance-obsessed media's “Weigh Less, Smile More!!” and “Perfect Your Parts, Perfect Your Life!!” headlines plastered everywhere, those messages rake in billions and get us nowhere closer to real health and happiness.  Instead, these...

Body Image and Bonding: Healing the Mother-Daughter Hurt

Far too many mother-daughter relationships are suffering under the lie that we are just bodies to be looked at, judged, and fixed. This painful belief manifests itself in moms appearing to be judgmental and overly critical, and daughters feeling like they will never...

Shedding for the Wedding? Shed the Lies Instead!

Every bride is reminded her wedding day is all about her. But instead of focusing on the happy relationship, major industries keep women focused on one new aspect of being a bride: becoming as small as possible for the big day.   I, Lexie, got married while I was a...

Selfies and Self-Objectification: A Not-So-Pretty Picture

Selfies aren't inherently evil. And taking 55 pictures of your own face at slightly different angles and with varying expressions is not fundamentally wrong. BUT (you knew that was coming) ... when we put this female-driven phenomenon in the context of the culture in...

Photoshopping: Altering Images and Our Minds

Photoshopping, digital alteration, image manipulation, blah blah blah. Everyone talks about the fact that so many images of women are “perfected” with the help of technology, but we can't just toss it aside as a non-issue everyone already knows about. Whether or not a...

Mind the (Thigh) Gap

Ever heard the phrase "Mind the gap?" It’s a warning to train passengers to take caution while crossing the gap between the train door and the station platform that began in London. Today, it’s time to use that phrase as a warning of a different kind of life-or-death...

Why Breast Implants Are Not “For You”

"I did it so I could feel better about my body. I did it so I could feel more like a woman. I did it so my clothes would fit better. I did it for ME." This is the text of a current TV commercial for breast augmentation, spoken by a beautiful, thin, middle-aged woman...

Loving Your Body 101: The 3 Questions of Positive Body Image

The comments section of anything body image-related proves there is LOTS of confusion around the idea of "loving your body." Some jump to the panicky conclusion that promoting positive body image is promoting obesity -- like we're telling people to forfeit positive...

Dove Doesn’t Redefine Beauty, It Reinforces It

One of the things we hate most in this world is when companies try to commodify self-esteem to sell products to girls and women. And this time it’s hitting really close to home. Dove just debuted their latest viral video at Sundance named "Selfie," which repeatedly...

To Him I Was An Object: Sexual Assault and Body Image

"To him I was an object."  That's how Elizabeth Smart -- who was kidnapped at age 14 and raped daily for 9 months -- describes her kidnapper's perception of her. To view or treat someone as an object, or a compilation of parts to be judged and consumed, is to...

So Much for Your “Body Peace Treaty,” Huh Seventeen?

If you needed any more ammunition to fuel your boycott of Seventeen magazine and your fight for media literacy for all, let this month's cover be the final blow. The magazine features "Pretty Little Liars" actress Troian Bellisario, whose cover story highlights her...

Victoria’s Secret War on Women. Nothing Sexy About It.

One of the things we at Beauty Redefined hate most in this world -- even more than Bratz dolls or people asking if we've seen the latest Dove video -- is when companies try to commodify girl power or empowerment to sell sexist, objectifying baloney. One of the most...

You Had a Baby? This is How You Get Your Body Back!

If you haven’t seen an ad on how to “get your body back!” after giving birth or seen a “news” story on how some celebrity new mom “got her body back,” you have not LIVED! Seriously, it means you are probably not alive. You should get that checked out. Because the rest...

Physically Photoshopping Ourselves Out of Reality

When the digital world of female faces and bodies looks nothing like the natural world, is it any wonder that women have turned to physical alteration to meet the unreal standards? The possibility of achieving unnatural ideals through enhancements, procedures and...

The Guys’ Guide to Seeing Women, Not Objects

Most of our research and nonprofit efforts focus on teaching girls and women to take their power back in the face of an objectifying culture that values physical ideals above all else. This post is about the flipside of that same issue: How men and boys can take their...

More Than a Body? Let’s Prove It.

Have you ever noticed this thing that girls do to each other that guys never do? When you see your friends, you may say something like, "You look so cute!" or "Have you lost weight? Looking hot!" or "I love your outfit!" When a friend posts a picture online, girls...

Weight, Size and Media Lies: The Numbers Don’t Add Up

We've all been duped. After years of TV watching, magazine reading, advertising exposure and media dominating our worlds, too many of us have internalized sneaky media lies that normal, average and regular, healthy women all maintain a weight of about 100-125 and wear...

To the Mom Who Taught Me Everything: A Body Image Breakthrough

The mother-daughter relationship can be either incredibly helpful or dangerously harmful to a daughter's body image. We stress the message that we are all more powerful than we realize and our influences matter. When a mother, grandma, sister, friend, or teacher...

If You Must Think About Your Weight, Think These 10 Things

By Tracy Moore, originally posted at Jezebel.com Another day, another opportunity to think about how much space you, as a woman, take up. That's how it feels when you can't throw a fat-burning supplement without hitting a visual about the losing of the weight or the...

Body Shame on You

"Shame on you!" Just the sound of that phrase feels awful, right? When someone says that phrase to you, it's hard to ignore. But too many girls and women live in a constant state of shame that feels completely normal today -- what scholars call "normative discontent."...

Sex Sells, But We’re Buying More Than We Bargained For

"To live in a culture in which women are routinely naked where men aren't is to learn inequality in little ways all day long." - Naomi Wolf   In a world where advertising-fueled media is inescapable, where the pornography industry has infiltrated all aspects of pop...

Cellulite, Rimples and Dimples: A Beautiful Reality Check

It’s everywhere in real life and absolutely nowhere in TV, movies or magazines. It’s unrelated to health, yet constantly depicted as a sure sign of lazy slobbiness. Large or small, the vast majority of women have it, but it gets depicted as shocking headline news in...

Holiday Survival Guide: Beauty Redefined Style

From body snarking to food comas and girly gift-giving, this is the go-to guide for all of your holiday body image woes! You know the scene. Family gathering. Aunts, uncles, cousins, distant family friends you haven’t seen in ages. All eyes on you as you come in....

Photoshop Phoniness: Hall of Shame

Photoshopping, digital alteration, image manipulation, blah blah blah. Everyone talks about the fact that so many images of women are “perfected” with the help of technology, but do we really understand how serious this issue is? Like exactly HOW MUCH these photos are...

Why “Fitspiration” Isn’t so Inspirational

If you are on Facebook, Pinterest, or Instagram, you have seen fitness inspiration images just in time for "the holidays" or "bikini season" or your "big day" to motivate you to “get fit” – we call them “fitspiration.” They are almost always images of parts of women...

Vogue Mom Shows Us How NOT to Fight Childhood Obesity

The teaser on the cover for what's being called the "worst Vogue article of all time" is unbelievably misleading: "A Mom Fights Childhood Obesity at Home." The truth is, if the article’s author, Dara-Lynn Weiss, mother of 7-year-old Bea, was genuinely trying to "fight...

Healthy Redefined Part 2: Forget About Fat and Get Fit!

Read Part 1 of this "Healthy  Redefined" Series HERE! In a world where health successes and failures are too often measured entirely by weight loss or weight gain, we have to seriously reconsider this idea. Fitness researchers prove it: “There is a need...

Healthy Redefined Part 1: Measuring the Obesity Crisis

From unfortunate fat-shaming in Georgia’s “Strong4Life” campaign put on by Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta to kids being graded on their weight in public schools across the country via their BMI score on their report cards, we see well-meaning people using harmful...

ESPN’s “Hot or Not” is Soooo Not Hot.

(For an exciting update as of 1/16/2013, be sure to read to the end of this post!) Every week, Utah-based sports radio station ESPN 700 takes a break from sports commentary to host a forum for objectifying, degrading, insulting and marginalizing women called "Hot or...

To BE or To Be Looked At?

You are capable of much more than looking hot. Have you thought about this statement? Do you understand the gravity of it? This phrase gave me goosebumps when I let it sink in. Women are always being looked at. And when we aren’t being looked at, we are too often...

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