We’re a week into the new year and you guys are probably well into putting those New Year’s resolutions into play. You’re eating healthier, being responsible with your credit card, and are a full chapter into writing your Great American novel. Great job on all of that, awesome work everybody. The good people over at The Body Love Conference, a team of body-positive advocates led by blogger Jes Baker, were just hoping you had a teeny-tiny bit of space left for one more resolution: love the mirror.
The group has put together a new photo series featuring several subjects facing themselves in the mirror, with the intention of sending the very important message: “Love your body and what you see. . . just as you are now. Not later. Not ‘after’. Now.”
“The mirror is a huge contributor to internal body distortion- we’re never looking in the mirror for ourselves, only for bodies that are misrepresented in media,” Baker explained to Hello Giggles. “I think this commitment to loving the mirror involves taking off those horrible goggles that our world gives us so we can start looking as OURSELVES. Look for you next time you peek at a mirror. Don’t look for a model. Don’t look for someone who looks like you. Look for you, because you’re your own kind of perfect already.”
To get that message across, Baker worked with photographer Jade Beall and asked 29 participants “. . . to come wearing whatever made them feel most confident. . . and the variety within these choices was beautiful,” Baker noted. “Some brought roller skates, some their violin. Some came in their dance clothing, some in their underwear. Some took off their shirts and some wore seven layers of clothing. And then one donned nothing but a gorgeous pink furry coat.”
Then, each participant was photographed in front of a mirror, and later asked why loving the mirror was so important. Their answers are pretty wonderful:
“After each person modeled, I asked them a few questions in the back room before they left,” Baker explained. “The most pivotal question being: why is loving the mirror important? The answers varied extensively and listening to all of them left me teary by the end of the night. The wisdom and stories shared were overwhelmingly profound and they reminded me that we (all sizes, shapes, shades, sexes, genders, and ages) are indeed in this together. And with our togetherness, we are strong.”
Make know mistake, loving the mirror isn’t about vanity.
“People might ask why we would choose something so superficial,” Baker said. “To which we reply: the reality of our world is that we are more likely to be told that we are ‘good people’ than anything else. Funny, creative, intelligent, communicative, generous, maybe even extraordinary. What we are NOT told is that our bodies are perfect just the way they are. We are taught that our body is flawed, and not only is it flawed, but that the majority of our worth lies within our physical appearance. Which, of course is never ‘perfect enough’ by societies standards. This affects our lives on a monumental level, as our bodies are the vessel we move throughout the world in.”
The #LoveTheMirror project would LOVE to feature some pictures of you guys loving your bodies to pieces, just snap a shot of yourself (mirror in the background is a bonus, but not necessary), with the text “This year, I will love the mirror” and the hashtag #lovethemirror. And if you have an awesome quote about loving your body, that goes in, too!
As positive as this campaign is, Baker knows that the battle with body insecurity isn’t won in a day, or even a year: “I think I’ll be learning to love the mirror for the rest of my life. . . but this year is the perfect year to start the journey. Because now is when it’s needed.”