Out of the many positive outcomes from Tess Holliday's rise to fame, one of my favorites is the popularity of the Eff Your Beauty Standards campaign. The message of the campaign is as simple as the slogan — Eff Your Beauty Standards seeks to promote the beauty and positivity among those who don't adhere to traditional standards of what society considers beautiful. The extremely body positive Instagram account is used not just to promote the campaign itself — or the really cool Eff Your Beauty Standards merch you can buy — but also to regram pictures of anyone who uses the hashtag as an act of self love.
Although the campaign was founded by supermodel Tess Holliday, Eff Your Beauty Standards is run by "eight body posi ladies and one fella" and, thankfully, the latest addition to the team is not just a body positive role model, blogger and activist, but an Asian representative for the campaign. Aarti Olivia Dubey, of the blog Curves Become Her, joined the team recently, not just to promote body positivity for plus size people, but for plus size people of color. Or, as she put it in her welcome post for the campaign's Instagram:
Heylo lovelies! I'm Aarti Olivia Dubey, a plus size chicky from Singapore and will be an Asian representative for Eff Your Beauty Standards! It's been 3 years since I started blogging and years of internal struggle led me to making sweeping changes with my outlook on my body and on internalised fatphobia. As a psychotherapist by profession and as someone who has struggled with body dysmorphia, I know the struggle all too well. My peers in Asia struggle with body shaming and constant beauty standard comparisons, which is what makes me so unabashed about dispelling beauty standards. I've been following this movement like you have for quite a while and I am stoked to be part of something that talks about body positivity, size diversity and so many important facets of self acceptance. I look forward to contributing to the awesomesauce movement that is effyourbeautystandards and looking forward to getting to know You! Thank you so much to Tess and the team!
The #effyourbeautystandards hashtag now has over one million posts on Instagram and is still going strong to spread the message of loving yourself regardless of what society and the media promotes as beauty — because everyone is beautiful, no matter their shape or size. By regramming pictures of the people who use the hashtag, Eff Your Beauty Standards is keeping the representation of different body positive women diverse and rooted in the public. Instead of just celebrating plus size celebrities, the account holds up anybody who's willing to stick their middle finger up at traditional beauty standards and love themselves no matter what. Dubey's addition to the team further proves the campaign's commitment to inclusivity.
The emphasis on intersectionality by the Eff Your Beauty Standards campaigners is one that needs to be more widespread in the body positivity community. Because although the fight for fat acceptance is a real one, often the influences on body shaming and body positivity can come not just from society and the media, but our differing cultures too. By focusing on the different was body shaming effects people from diverse backgrounds, we can learn more about overcoming it.
Hopefully, with a more diverse team behind the Eff Your Beauty Standards campaign, the emphasis on different types of body positivity will grow. Realizing how body shaming works around the world will help us to tackle this issue everywhere, instead of just in our society. And by focusing on individual experiences, we can find a better way to explore self love and learn from each other.
Images: Courtesy of Aarti Olivia Dubey