Barbie: Skinny Bitch Or Surprising Feminist?

Hello my angels!

A few weeks ago, I had to give a persuasive speech to my public speaking class, and I had the brilliant idea to argue the disgusting and unhealthy effects Barbie dolls can have on young girls. As an adamant body image activist, I thought to myself: pshhtttt, piece of cake. 

Then I started to do some research about Barbie herself and the story of how she came to be.
I read some things, found some information, looked at some pictures that made me go...
"Well, so she has done one good thing..."
"Okay, that's pretty cool, but..."
"I mean, yeah, that's really inspiring, and all..."

until I found myself completely confused.
Who is this Barbie?
Is she the raging disproportionate tyrant I imagined her to be?
Or is there something going on beneath the plastic?

Compare and Contrast 

Lord knows the first thing anyone will bring up when Barbie, body image, and young girls are put together in a sentence: but Barbie is so thiiiiiiin, so disproportional, how could you even say that she's the best doll on the market?!!!! 

Now lookie here. I'm not saying Barbie's size is a natural, realistic depiction of a woman's body. Mathematically speaking, that would be a lie, and there's plenty of research on the topic that you can find on the interwebs.

However,  Charlotte Alter mentioned in her piece for Times Ideas something that changed the game for me: how about the other dolls on the market?

If people are arguing that Barbie is too skinny to have a place on the doll market, then who should replace her?
Barbie's current competitors include Monster High Dolls (left) and Bratz dolls (right).

You wanna talk proportions, let's: Look at the waists, thighs, arms...
You cannot seriously argue that these dolls are in any way, shape, or form better body image role models than Mrs Mattel herself!

Besides, Bratz dolls look fundamentally constipated. Pouty mouth, huge judging eyes; she may be pretty, but that mean gleam is enough to make me put down the doll and run for my life. Barbie, on the other hand; smiling like there's no tomorrow. Heaven forbid that's the kind of role model your daughter looks up to!

Let's not forget those outfits. While the Pale Prostitute "Monster High" Dolls are busy tearing up their fishnet tights and sucking blood from their high school classmates, Barbie's busy with her career, her goals and service to society.

Speaking of Barbie's career....

I Ain't No Wifey

Barbie was founded by the Mattel toy company in 1959. Within the first years, careers, such as nurse and schoolteacher, became available for purchase. A pretty girl with her own career? Shocking!

Ken, her metrosexual boyfriend, didn't come along until 1961, which means that Barbie wasn't founded on the idea of being someone's wife, someone's accessory, NO. She was an independent woman, with an independent career, and you had better step aside before her fuchsia stilettos walked all over you. 

And even when Ken did come along, this didn't stop for one second the absolute explosion of careers Barbie has undertaken these past 50+ years. 
Barbie has her own convertible, her own dream house, her own freaking tour bus, without needing no man: if that's not a strong, empowered, feminist role model, I don't what is. 

psst: Did you notice that I said Ken her boyfrand, not husband? That's right: Barbie and Ken, unmarried man and woman, lived together in 1961. Barbz, your progressivism rocks. 

Ahead of The Curve

A fantastic example of Barbie being way ahead of the curve in terms of woman's rights and opportunities is 1965 Astronaut Barbie. Yes indeed, in 1965, Mattel released an Astronaut Barbie kit (pictured left), no helmet hair required. 

You read that right.
For 18 years, Barbie was inspiring young girls to reach for the stars (quite literally) before it was even a realistic dream. 

Still to this day, Barbie pushes the boundaries of conventional society gender roles.
Every election since 1992 has come with Mattel's own Barbie for President kit. 

I'm writing this today, in 2014; let's all take a moment to remember that America has yet to elect a female president!! 

Also something worth noting in this picture: 
Barbie President comes in Caucasian, African-American, Hispanic-American and Asian-American, so that no matter what your ethnicity is, you, young empowered girl, can be the leader of the free world.

Am I the only one who shed a tear just then? 

Barbie has done many other great things for racial acceptance and diversity encouragement. 
In 1968, Mattel came out with Christie, Barbie's black friend, the first black doll to be released on a national market. 
1968: only 4 years after the Civil Rights Act was passed, outlawing most public segregation and prejudice based on race. 

For a young black girl to be growing up in a time where white normality, racism, and prejudice is still the norm in many places, having a beautiful, empowered doll that represents your race can mean the world. 

Since 1968, the range of African-American Barbies has been equally impressive. Just like all white people don't look the same, all black people don't look the same:
-Some have more red untertones in their skin, some more blue, some are darker, some are lighter. 

This may seem like an insignificant detail to some, but having pride in your origins, in the uniqueness and complexity of your pigment, is a wonderful, inspiring idea that is often overlooked by many other competitors. 


Barbie's not perfect, I'll give you that.
But jesus christ who is?!

I'll leave you with this simple question:
What's more important to YOU? 

1. That your daughter plays with a doll that fits your idea of a healthy size and proportion (if you can find one, please let me know)?


2. That your daughter plays with a doll that teaches her that her life is in her own hands?
That because Barbie can be a CEO, an athlete and a stay-at-home mom, than so can she? 

That's up to you, future parents.
But when you're walking up and down the aisles of a toy store in 10, 15, 20 years, and you see a Barbie in the corner of your eye, I hope you know what's more important.

Have a wonderful day my loves!


Food For Thought: My 3 Obsessions

Hello my gorgeous dolls!

As you have probably noticed, the FP website has undergone a bit of a make-over!

Many of you like it, so I'll probably keep it, but if you have any other suggestions, please let me know:)

These are things I have been reading, or seeing, and thinking about a lot in February. Hope you can enjoy them as well:)

1. Beauty Redefined!

You all need to check this website out! 
Beauty Redefined is a non-profit focusing on teaching girls to "recognize and reject harmful messages about their bodies and what “beauty” means and looks like". 
They have incredible media outlets, and their blog is an insanely fascinating read!

here's the url if you feel like being inspired: http://www.beautyredefined.net/

2.  Body Shaming: I CAN'T BE WHAT YOU WANT
This picture I found on this Tumblr page really embodies the overwhelming society contradiction that is body shaming.

If you're considered "fat", you are, as the picture presents, lazy, insecure, careless, out of shape, etc. 

But heaven forbid you become "too thin" for someone's standards.

Then you have an eating disorder, you're unhealthy, you have no insecurities, and you're a bitch.

Life is already a confusing, complex, mind-fucking journey we undertake. 

Don't let the overwhelming body shaming messages get to your head. 
There is no "right" body, you'll never make everyone happy.
So just do you, mmkay? ;)

3. Yale and Mental Health Discrimination

Get ready to rage, my loves.
I found this articles, linked here, that tells the story of Rachel, who struggles with mental health issues, and the disgusting way the Yale administration handled her medical case.

This infuriates me to a point that I can barely express in words.

There is so much stigma, so little understanding, so many ignorant slurs and words, and no empathy.

When will be the time we treat each other with the respect we deserve?

A mental illness is just like asthma, just like diabetes, just like a cold. 
It needs to be treated, and helped, but it doesn't define you. 
Doesn't make you weird, or crazy, or less worthy of love.

Yet people are afraid to tell their friends and loved ones about a problem they have.
It's because of policies such as the one discussed in the article that promulgates a society based on fear of the unknown, of the misunderstood.

Just know that I may not know what you're going through, but I know that it hurts.
Some of you like to email me about some personal things that you feel you cannot tell your family or friends, and if anybody is feeling this sentiment of solitude and isolation,
please reach out, I'm always here, I have, like, no life, okay?:) 


Hope your week will be lovely:)



F L A W L E S S: Top 5 Most Common Plastic Surgeries

Hello my beauties:)
(pppsssstttttt: don't forget to check out my latest Adios Barbie article about gym culture

Whenever I talk about my idol Lana Del Rey, I can't help but yell in my most obnoxious white girl voice: EH MA GAWD LANA IS LITERALLY FLAWLESS. SHE HAS NO FLAAAHWS.

I know, I know, it's not amazingly body positive of me, but I just can't contain my LanaLove.

I don't really mean it, of course, I'm sure Lana has some sort of flaw, like an eyebrow hair out of place, but I find it interesting that we use and abuse the idea of flawlessness, even facetiously.

I am someone who still struggles to find peace in imperfection, on my body and in my life, and I know I am not alone. I, like, know, that perfection is unobtainable, but the voices inside my head, at the end of a long hard day can tell me otherwise. I don't want just the stars; I want the sun and the moon and the supernovas. I want it all and I want it now.

I know, impossible, so I've been told.

But what if it wasn't, just for a day?
What if you could reach out and snatch away all the stars in the sky?
What if you had all the means and opportunities to hold Venus in the palm of your hand?
What if you could have perfection? What would it look like? 


It's important to look at the most common aesthetic plastic surgery operations performed today to get a real sense of beauty priorities. I've written about this before, but in a world where it seems you can fix all your flaws with a snap of your fingers, what's the first thing you would make "right"?
(list according to Discovery's Fit and Health magazine)

5. Tummy Tuck 
Get A Flat Stomach Or Die Trying 

Pot bellies are so last season.

I can't say my jaw dropped when I read that over 134,746 tummy tucks were performed in 2005; we live in a culture that idolizes a flat stomach.

What really fascinated me was that 96% of those surgeries were on women! 

I've learned that more men than we think get these kinds of surgeries, but this statistic demonstrates an abhorring double standard when it comes to beauty and the belly.

Suck in your gut when you're taking a picture! 

Do those extra crunches for those bikini body abs!
Buy those Spanx to smooth out your food baby!


I'm already frustrated, and we're only at number 5

Is it sad that the Golden Girls are my beauty idols? 
4. Eyelid Surgery

Now this is something I wasn't expecting!

Perhaps because it is practiced on an older demographic I hadn't heard of this procedure as often as others on this list, but this is no different than any other age-defying surgery.

If your wallet can afford the the fountain of youth, go ham, but I'd like to remind some of my older readers that many beautiful women, such as Betty White, Helen Mirren and Meryl Streep, rock their age like no 23 year old can.

3. Breast Augmentation

Oooookay, let's get real.

I have many a-girlfriends, and we talk about anything and everything under the sun, and yes, that includes boobs. 
So I know about boob jobs and their appeal.

To be perfectly honest, I would never get mine done, because I don't need a ton of help in said department. 

Also, Victoria's Secret, anyone?

But I think, like all aesthetic procedures, this decision has to come from you.

It won't fix a crazy low self esteem.
And It won't make men want to marry you (at least not the right kind).

However, if you just want to boost your bust because it's something YOU want to do, then by all means, curve away!

PS: Keep in mind, the bigger the cup size, the bigger the back problems. And running is hard. And stairs. My life is an eternal struggle. 

2. Rhinoplasty (nose job)

This might be the most fascinating of them all. 

Because there is such a thing as objectively speaking "smaller breasts" or "baggy eyelids".

But a nose that's too big? Too pointy? Too round? 

That's entirely subjective, which brings up some serious body image issues.

Out of all the ones previously mentioned, this surgery is the one that is most likely to be done more than once: It's not small enough yet! Not pointy enough! Still too crooked!

Never happy with the results, even after your 4th or 5th procedure? 

Guess what honey. It's not the nose that's the problem. 
It's your self esteem. 

I know many feel insecure about their schnauzer, but the beautiful thing about the subjectivity of nose size and proportion is that no one gets to decide what nose is perfect for you.

Have a round belly? That may be a fact. 

But having a "hideous" nose? That's entirely up to you. So vote NO on the body negative ballot, and choose to love that damn thing. 

1. Liposuction  

Ahhhhhh, the Occident's fiercest enemy: fat.

The mother of all plastic surgery, as it targets your "problem areas" as you see fit:

Want your thighs shrinked? Doable

Want your arms toned down? Doable
Want your hips narrowed? Doable
HOW BOUT THAT THIGH GAP? Sure (or is it...read more here)

I've written time and time again about the fear of fat, and it's just plain ridiculous that this is still an issue.
Body weight, BMI, fat %, none of it indicated beauty.
And also, by the way, beauty does not indicate anything either, especially not self-worth.

Again, do what you want, it's your body!

But loving yourself seems to be quite a cheaper option.


I hope you all have a wonderful day.

Please love yourself, make smart choices, and smile.




Single Valentine's Day Playlist (Stay Strong Songs 2014)

Hello my gorgeous fudgies

Are you done watching Nicholas Sparks movies
Cursing at the television?
Sending yourself flowers?
Did you run out of ice cream? 

Valentine's Day sucks, I know. 
But it is the great equalizer, because it sucks for every single person.

So get your single friends together, plug in your iPod, and let these stay-strong-during-valentine's-day tunes drown out the sound of your sobbing.

1. Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It), Beyonce 

There is no such thing as a single girl playlist without a little Beyonce. 
I don't care if you're a metalhead or a country queen, this is the only song you need to dance away your problems. 

2. Blow Me One Last Kiss, P!nk

Men. MEN. Can't live with em, can't live without them. 
But just for one song, have enough of their ridiculousness, grab your hairbrush, and put on a show. 

3. I Don't Wanna Be In Love, Good Charlotte 

Love is silly, right? ...Right?!?!?! 
Whether you believe this statement or not, GC's love-sucks anthem is untouchable. A nice throwback to 2008 (which is 6 years ago...just let that sink in grandmas). 

4. Love Is Gone, David Guetta

Who says fist pumping, synth blasting techno music can't fix your broken heart? 
With a chorus that was made to be screamed at the top of your lungs, get ready to dance, laugh and cry all at once. 

5. Gunpower and Lead, Miranda Lambert

Unleash the scorned ex-girlfriend hiding in all of us with a Deep South country song. 
Where are those pesky cowboys my mom bought in a garage sale....

6. Stupid, Sarah McLachlan

Let's slow down the tempo a little bit.
Locate your girlfriends, your tissues and a nearby ocean to throw yourself in, because no one is immune to Sarah's melancholic voice.

7. Everything We Had, The Academy Is...

One of my favorite songs by one of my favorite (but sadly disbanded) alt groups. 
Check out the video if you can, it's incredible (and by it's, i mean Will, the lead singer). 

8. Somebody To Love, Queen

The most classic love(less) song of the 20th century. 
The opera that shares the tale of many a single souls. 
Freddy Mercury will live on as long as humanity and Valentine's Day does.

9. According To You, Orianthi

Picking the rhythm back up again with a girl power song. 
Orianthi is an amazing guitarist, lyricist, and all around bad ass bitch who don't need no man. 

10. Your Favorite Song, Your Favorite Artist

This isn't about me. This is about you treating yourself, making sure that you realize how unimportant V-Day is, because loving yourself is about 132832931931 times more important than a crappy Hallmark card.
So play your favorite song, surround yourself with your favorite people, and buy yourself that discounted chocolate. You deserve it, dammit.