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Where Cosmo got it wrong…2015 Trends that need to R.I.P

Where Cosmo got it wrong…2015 Trends that need to R.I.P

Twitter has erupted with the new discovery of Cosmopolitan’s “21 Beauty Trends That Need to Die in 2015”  due to the fact that all the black women included in the article are featured in the “R.I.P.” category or  trends that need to go.  Such categorization has some publicly encouraging the boycotting of the magazine, while others have taken to the social media site with hashtags like #whatitsliketobeablackgirl. Yet my problem isn’t with the topic of categorization but why it exists to begin with, so in response to Cosmopolitan and all those crying wolf over this “problem” here’s my list of Attitudes That Need to Die in 2015.

1. Playing the victim: While racism in this world does still exist, it is important to know how to choose your battles. Sure there are 4 women in this article who are black, and all of them are in the “R.I.P.” category, but what about the remaining 17 who are either White or Hispanic who are also in this category? They aren’t taking to social media and hashtagging their lives away because it doesn’t matter. Sure as a community we have been dealt some dirty hands, but does this article really compare to the Trayvon Martins of this world? I think not. I mean sure Cosmopolitan has apologized, wonderful, but what about the apologies for all the deaths and injustice? Hmmm…crickets. So take a step back, reevaluate the seriousness of situations, and wonder why you’re worrying about the opinions of shrimp if you consider yourself a shark.

2. Discounting people because of race, features, etc.: One important thing I noticed about the Huffington Post article– which brought my attention to this outrage in the first place– is that they continually discount Nicole Richie’s inclusion in the Cosmo list because she is mixed. The same thing occurred when President Obama first took office as the world continually referred to his Hawaiian/White descent and began to discount him as a black man. However this isn’t just a problem in the media but also in our everyday lives. Just look on social media and you’ll see team light skins and team dark skins, team relaxed, natural, texlaxed, Hatian, Jamaican and everything in between. The constant segregation of our community from the inside needs to stop, and we need to learn to embrace and learn from each others strengths and weaknesses.

3. Instigating: Along with those who play the victim every time a horn sounds are those who add flame to the fire by supporting the ignorance whether knowledgeable or not. Take for instance all those who have retweeted others post on the Cosmo article, and of all those retweets all the incorrect information that was spread. Think of all the individuals who may not have taken the time to view the article themselves, but still tweeted about it just because it was trending.

4. Boxing: Now I don’t mean boxing as in self-defense. By all means if you feel the need to learn to protect yourself, as I feel we all should, do so and have fun while doing it. Feel empowered by doing it, but when you’re boxing people into a stereotype, look or any other aspect of someone’s life just because you think it’s not okay I have to stop you. The whole article is based on styles that some secluded group of people says is out of style. Changing my hair color from ombre to some fancy new dying trick should not be something I’m told needs to “R.I.P.” and it definitely shouldn’t be something I’m put down for. Last time I checked, my capability to shave one side of my head did not become more difficult just because a new year rolled around. Therefore I’d appreciate it if Cosmo and everyone other “fashion magazine” could learn that they have no right to tell me how to dress or do my hair. I understand that it’s all a part of the game, but if that’s the case then change the rules because you have a big enough audience to do so. If you refuse to change the rules, then stop acting like you’re trying to help empower women when every other season you’re telling them that they’re doing “it” wrong: from hair, to love, to smiling, to friending, to posting, to moisturizing, to sex, to family…how is you discounting my judgment suppose to empower me? It’s simply going to conform and destroy me.

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Posted by on April 5, 2015 in Be Pensive

 

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1 out of 100

1 out of 100

 

I’m a WOMAN! It’s something I’ve been waiting for since I was 15– you know that stage were you only have 3 years until you’re “grown”, you know everything, and bugs still make you squeal. Yep. I’d been waiting for it, and now that I’m turning 21 I’m ready to hit the pause button and embrace womanhood. Now with great titles come great responsibility, and I’ve taken them on willingly.

As a woman I have the right to pay bills, vote, be equally employed, laugh, shed tears, go crazy, go to war, stay at home, raise a family, get a degree, argue, and eat chocolate– my favorite. This new age of adulthood comes with a lot of rights, including the one to love myself and sometimes not even want to look at myself, and as a woman I’m accepting that more with each fleeting day.  And I find that as I accept I won’t always like what reflects in the mirror, my days get easier and my love grows stronger.

The CIA says there’s about 107 men to every 100 women. That means that seven lucky men are going to have to make that sacrifice and take on an extra wife– and I think my boyfriend got the luck of the draw. (Now I’m neither for or against polygamy… my stance is whatever makes you happy. Just don’t ask me to share. So I’m not saying he has a second girlfriend, but with my new found right he may feel like he does. )

From day to day I wake up thinking about who I want to be.  For as many faces and colors are in that photo, I wake up in the mood of each one. Some days I’m silly, others I’m philosophical. Some days I’m Aubrey, and others I’m Pink. (My boyfriend’s right is to figure out which I am from second to hour and act accordingly.)  I use to think there was a problem with my flip  in characters; like by some divine law I was restricted to one personality for the rest of my life– and some of that may have been because of the all the movies I watch. Aside from Miss Congeniality not many movies/shows I grew up with portrayed that a girl could be glamorous and adventurous. So when I found myself changing out of jeans and a tee with hopes of embracing the mascara and sandals the next day, I thought I just didn’t know who I was.

Now six years later… I see that I always have, and that a lot of people like it. Gone are the days where I look to my glamour girls and sigh because their makeup is intrusive and I’m not even sure what it’s called. Gone are the days where the dawn of a new school year brings about the decision to either be girly or athletic. I’m going to be comfortable! And that’s the only decision that truly matters. As long as you’re comfortable in what you wear, look presentable, and use all hygienic measures you’re good to go.

I can’t pinpoint when I made this realization. I know being in a sorority where there are a variety of girly athletes and glamour girls has helped, but most of it I would say was accepting and maturing. Accepting that maybe  Whitney was on to something when she sang “I’m Every Woman”, and maturing into my own skin without over comparing myself to my peers. My mom tells everyone I love wearing pants– but that doesn’t mean I can’t own a couple hundred dresses.

Caitlin Moran said it best:

“When a woman says, ‘I have nothing to wear!’, what she really means is, ‘There’s nothing here for who I’m supposed to be today.”

 

 

 
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Posted by on July 28, 2014 in Be Yourself

 

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She’s growing up

“Hannah your mom brought you that?”

“No. I brought it.”

“Hannah you brought that with your money?”

“Yes.”

“You have a job?”

“Yes.”

Her name is Alexia, and I’ve known her for seven years. When we met she was about four. She was smart and she was driven. She was driven to be like myself and every other girl older than her. So every time I came to church with something new she came with the same questions.  (And she still does.)

Now she’s using lip gloss and body spray, and she’s learned to roll her eyes.  (Wonderful.) She’s growing up into beautiful young lady, but she has some challenges to face and that’s where I come in.  Just the other day I noticed Alexia getting excited because her dress is getting shorter. My first reaction was anger. (She’s too young to want to show off the little goods she does have. I’m still trying to figure out how to handle mine, and she’s ready to flaunt hers? No, just no.) But then I remembered how I felt at her age when my favorite skirt started getting shorter. I was excited too, and that’s when I realized that she wasn’t wrong for feeling that way. We were wrong for teaching it to her.

Short dresses and tight clothes seem to be the staple item in women clothing.  So Alexia’s first sign that she’s growing up is her short dress. She isn’t excited cause she wants to show off anything. She’s excited because she’s growing up. She realizes that she’s not a little girl anymore and, though that may bother her at times, it’s exciting.  So instead of getting mad at her, I sit her down and tell her that there’s more to growing up than getting attention and showing body parts. (I, of course, give her the rated G version of the convo.) I make sure she know it’s her brains that make her a young lady and not how she looks or what she wears.  I tell her that it’s how she carries herself that makes her beautiful, but she needs more. So I show her in the way I live. (After all she does look up to me, so she’s watching what I do. ) I hold off on a boyfriend because I want her to know that a man doesn’t make you a woman, but an education does. She knows I have guy friends, but she also knows that I’m involved back at my college, and I study hard.  I avoid dressing too provocative because I want her to know that showing skin doesn’t make you a woman. (Sometimes I’ll even wear a floral pattern or a graphic tee, so she understands that we’re not so different after all.)

Watching her grow, I’ve noticed that sometimes being upset and disappointed doesn’t do anything but break her spirit. My grandpa always said that “Those that know better do better.” (I think he was on to something.) Therefore, I can’t be mad with the way she acts sometimes because she doesn’t know any better. It’s my job– as the big sister because she refuses to call me anything else– to teach her better. She listens too. Sure I may have to remind her, but she gets what I’m saying. She’s growing up, but she’ll always be my princess. However now I’m not just her playmate, but also a confidante and an advisor. She’ll always be my princess, but she’s becoming a queen– and it’s my job to help her get her crown.

 
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Posted by on March 4, 2014 in Be Encouraged

 

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