Red lipstick is a new symbol of solidarity for sexual assault survivors
April is National Sexual Assault Awareness Month and the nonprofit organization Red My Lips is asking us to take a stand against sexual violence by wearing our favorite red lipstick in solidarity with survivors.
As Mic reports, Red My Lips was founded by social worker and activist Danielle Tansino, who, when she was 29, went out one night with friends, and later was isolated and raped by an acquaintance. Tansino filed a police report and pushed for her case to go to trial, but was told by a female district attorney that they would not prosecute because, “Jurors don’t like girls that drink.”
Tansino then resolved to challenge rape culture and victim blaming and thus, Red My Lips was born. The organization asks survivors and supporters to wear red lipstick every day for the month of April. The idea is, red lipstick isn’t something you tend to see your average person wearing on the regular, so this change in beauty regimen would press people to ask you, “What’s up with the new look?” That’s when the lipstick wearer can talk about their support of survivors and their commitment to the fight against rape culture.
Tansino is determined to raise awareness, but her number one goal in this campaign is to support survivors.
“My most basic hope for the campaign is that it will allow survivors to feel and SEE support on faces of those around them,” Tansino told Classy.org. “So many survivors suffer for years in silence, which can be incredibly isolating. And those who speak often experience a different kind of isolation, because so many people don’t know how to show support or talk about these issues. I would love to see that change. On top of survivors deserving support, it’s also hard to hold perpetrators accountable when we’re busy pointing fingers at their victims. And it’s hard to prosecute perpetrators when survivors are afraid to speak.”
And if you think it’s just women getting their lipstick on in support of survivors, think again. According to Tansino, ” . . . one of the most dedicated supporters last year was a man from Canada who blogged about the campaign, shared updates and picture, and even wore red lipstick out! I also had an amazing group of guy friends who agreed to wear red lipstick out at a Boston bar one night last April.”
Red My Lips has been straight-up CRUSHING it on social media, check out some of the awesomeness below.
For more information on the campaign, check out the Red My Lips website, and with a little over a week left in April, it’s not too late to grab your favorite red lipstick and get your solidarity on.