Body Image

Recent posts

Pornstars are People, Too!

I’ll admit it- I take seriously guilty pleasure in perusing celebrity gossip magazines. My favorite feature is when they show the celebrities in their everyday lives- at the grocery store, in sweatpants, and- best of all- without makeup on. So I shouldn’t have been surprised when Buzzfeed released a list of “33 Startling Photos of Porn Stars” without makeup. And yet, I found myself mildly peeved. Perhaps it was the comparison of photos- one of the woman with makeup, and one without directly next to it. Continue Reading →

Join the Consent Revolution

Last week, two media-savvy feminists launched the Pink Loves Consent campaign. Designed to look just like the actual Victoria’s Secret website, their site sells underwear boasting empowering slogans such as “ask first” and “let’s talk about sex.” Additionally, the home page of their website features a gorgeous plus size woman of color – something that would never happen on the real page. Image courtesy of Baltimore Fishbowl

The website caused quite a stir. In my opinion, creators Hannah Brancato and Rebecca Nagle chose a fantastic way to draw attention to rape culture and attempt to make social change. Continue Reading →

Changing My Body Image

I’m not someone who hates the way that they look, but I can’t say that I love my body most days. I’m slowly getting better about it, and the main thing that changed was living with people who are immensely comfortable in their own bodies. My friends don’t have the so-called “perfect” bodies, but none of them seemed the slightest bit fazed by this. Further, they tend to be more comfortable wearing less. As someone who is rarely comfortable being minimally clothed or naked in front of others, it definitely took some getting used to living with people who truly live for less is more (at least when it comes to clothing). Continue Reading →

When Our Bodies Change

All human bodies go through some measure of change, because we all start as infants and, depending on factors such as life span and sex, go through a number of changes related to reproductive capacities, aging, and illness. I wonder, however, whether contemporary Western culture, with its emphasis on conformity and fashion, forces us to pay more attention to our changing bodies. If the current trend is skin-tight-whatevers, gaining or losing five pounds would make a huge difference in what you can wear. The capitalist and commercialist aspects of modern America also play a role in how we perceive our changing bodies. Try this weight-loss diet! Continue Reading →

“The Last Taboo”: Dealing with Disability and Sexuality

Alexander Freeman, Taken from The Last Taboo courtesy of OUTCAST PRODUCTIONS

“When someone looks at someone in a chair, or with a disability, or someone who is outside what we call ‘normal’, they, in their minds, they’re not thinking ‘this person could meet me on an intellectual and sexual level,’ and they’re not thinking ‘oh, I can have a fling with this person’ or ‘I’d like to go out with this guy in a chair’ or ‘this girl in a chair,’ or ‘this is different but I’ll try it out’ and that’s part of the problem…able-bodied people aren’t willing to take the first step to find out what is possible.” At age 25, Alexander Freeman is no newcomer to the social politics of having a disability. Having dealt with cerebral palsy since the day he was born, Freeman has come to both understand and question the nuances of social interaction that are specific to people with visible disabilities. A few years ago, during his time at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, all of these lingering questions came to a head. After sharing a very personal experience with a close friend, Freeman “was determined to change people’s perspectives” on disability and sexuality “and capture the stories of many people, and tell [his] own story.” Continue Reading →

Pleasure At Any Size

This blog post, Ten Rules for Fat Girls, has a bunch of excellent advice on maintaining a positive body image even faced with the stressful and negative messages aimed at overweight people. I like how the writer emphasizes: “Touch yourself.  You’re not gross… Often because we are heirs to such body shame, we avoid getting to know our flesh.” This is a really excellent point, and one that we as sex bloggers would like to restate: everyone at every size should be acquainted with their bodies, know what feels good, and know how to pleasure themselves. Because if you don’t, who will? Continue Reading →

Young Ears are Listening: Gender, Body Image, and Top 40 Music

Yesterday, I was in the passenger seat of my roommate’s car. We were guiltily enjoying some Top 40 in the background as we enjoyed the gorgeous scenery, when suddenly we were accosted by these lyrics:

“Can you blow my whistle baby, whistle baby
Let me know
Girl I’m gonna show you how to do it
And we start real slow
You just put your lips together
And you come real close
Can you blow my whistle baby, whistle baby
Here we go” (Whistle, by Flo Rida)

So, not exactly what I want to hear on my car ride. Or, um, ever. Not to mention that it took us a good minute to even hear the lyrics. The song has a repetitive “whistle” riff that makes it sound like children’s music. Continue Reading →

Burlesque and Body Positivity

This essay talks about body image from the perspective of burlesque performers and audiences, emphasizing that everyone’s journey to body positivity is unique. Bodies put on display help counteract normative ideas about the abstract, perfect body, thus helping everyone feel a little more comfortable in their own skins. The author concludes on a positive, proactive note: “Own your body, call other people out when they attempt to shame you; the more we love our bodies a little more, the better we can help others love their own.” Regardless of your thoughts on burlesque as an art form, this seems like sound advice. Follow us on Twitter @mysexprofessor. Continue Reading →

Being Objectified When You’re Not Used To It

This interesting piece by Alyssa Rosenberg describes how singer D’Angelo experienced the objectification of his body and didn’t like it. It seems a simple point, but as Rosenberg notes, the usual gender construction whereby men are not being objectified constantly “implies that you shouldn’t be affected by how other people perceive your body. It’s a perspective that makes men feel better about ogling, about demanding. If it’s flattery, there’s no ugly undertone to it.” If someone who’s not used to being objectified experiences it and reacts so negatively, is it any wonder that women, who are objectified constantly, have so much trouble with body image? Continue Reading →

Sex, Love, and Life Advice for Guys

I’m not a sex educator, but I am a sex geek and I love to talk about sex. There’s nothing like having a discussion with your mates in a pub, while the rest of the world moves around you and you’re discussing the latest thing you’ve learned, then some random walks past right at that part of the conversation and you get a weird look. So in response to Debby’s post about advice for women, I compiled a male set of advice that I thought could be helpful to MSP’s readers. 1. You have penis – learn to live with it. Continue Reading →