This artist’s selfie project challenges beauty norms in the nude

It’s always so great when some body-positivity superhero posts a picture of themselves that expands the definition of what it means to be beautiful. Then all of us at home on our laptops/phones/whatever can look at the photographs and say, “Oh, I look like that! But I never see models and movie stars look like that, so I always thought I was weird. But now, not only do I NOT feel weird, I feel kind of beautiful, because I look like this brave and beautiful body-positivity role model.”

We live for these kinds of ladies, and right now we’re living for feminist artist Molly Soda, who has been posting naked selfies for the world to see and highlighting aspects of her body like her belly hair — a thing many women have but few women ever see shown on-screen or in print.

Soda has compiled unsent photos and texts that show the artist being physically and emotionally vulnerable into an online zine that is appropriately and awesomely called “Should I Send This.”

“The text/photographs were sort of piling up, both on my computer and in my head – I sort of needed to do a purge in order to move on,” Soda told Dazed.

Part of Soda’s mission is to take back her appearance, and, when it comes to how she feels about her body, cut others out of the equation.

“I’m not really concerned with what men think of my body hair or my body any more,” Soda explained. “I’m more concerned with how I feel about my own body. Other women’s responses have really encouraged me. I have a lot of girls messaging me about how my stomach hair makes them feel better/less self-conscious about theirs­­. That’s what I care about – not about whether or not men find it attractive.”

Ultimately, Soda hopes the project not only helps people feel more comfortable in their own skin, but also helps us connect to one another in a meaningful way.

“I want people to be able to relate and feel connected to it,” says Soda. “This piece isn’t about me, it’s about everyone who has ever tried to achieve validation/intimacy via sending a text message, a nude… anything vulnerable using digital communication.”

Check out “Should I Send This?” (Warning: SUPER NSFW) over here. 

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[Images via Instagram]

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