British e-mag “Just As Beautiful” goes hard-copy. The magazine targets women size 14-20- that’s interviews, models and advertising. No dieting articles. No airbrushing. Honesty in magazines? Has the world gone mad? A few weeks ago, I wrote about the toxic effect magazines and advertising can have on our mental environment- perhaps a publication like this would be less harmful, but still offer the fun of fashion and being glamorous?
I suppose the “bizz” is waking up to under-represented markets, realizing they can make a buck or two without resorting to sizeist arm-twisting and guilt. I think I’ll keep my eye out for this one, to see if it differs from glossies in other ways. Could it be less manipulative? Possibly less vacuous?
The only troubling detail to me is the title. Why use a defensive title? Judging from the cover (I know, I know) I’d say it looks self-conscious in general.
On the subject of being defensive- I found myself in a shopping mall, passing by a larger woman’s clothing store. The clothes looked well-made and interesting, so I dropped in to see if I could find a black skirt to supplement the Billie Collection.
The shop assistants were less than friendly. I explained my errand, asked about sizing based on the measurements I carry around in my moleskin, and they brought out several black skirts. No smiles. No chatting. It might have been my rainbow skirt, great big sun hat, and thick tortiseshell glasses. It might have been my accent. (Neither my dressing nor accent causes stonewalling on a normal day.) It could have been my size.
Either way, they were less than chatty and outgoing, to the point when I was trying to be friendly at the counter, they just stood and stared at me and my words trailed off lamely. I wasn’t making tasteless jokes, I had a clear stated purpose (and money!) and they still treated me like the enemy. They weren’t rude exactly, but I could tell they were glad to take my money and be rid of me. The way they acted, I wouldn’t be surprised if they sprayed the place with Lysol after I left.
As I walked out, I wondered if this is the sort of thing larger women have to put up with when they go into clothing stores. If so, what a shame. Why can’t we women be happy with who we are without feeling defensive or putting someone else down? That seems to be the modus operendi in our world. When will we understand that just because someone is different than us doesn’t mean one or the other of us is wrong?
So I say bring on diversity in glamor, but please just drop the baggage!