A Conflict of Interest

A Guest blog by Moose


Sometimes I wonder, what would my life had been like if I’d been born somewhere between the 1500s and 1900s? Sure, I probably would have been burnt for being a witch, given how I do like to dabble with herbal remedies and tarot cards. Did you know that even essential oils are considered somewhat of a magical thing?

Even though I’m not sure I would have loved those ages, without a proper sewage system, running water or bath bombs delivered to your door the next day, I probably would have thoroughly enjoyed being considered beautiful in my larger body and never having to worry if I would be able to pull off wearing a swimsuit or shorts, if swimsuits had been a thing back then.

During that time, a substantial body weight had a lot of appeal, for all people. It wasn’t only considered the beauty standard at the time; it was also considered ‘natural’. Being fat was considered healthy.

Nowadays, we can’t imagine anything like that. Sometime around the early 1900s the beauty ideal shifted. Slowly but surely fat people became unappealing and ‘thin’ became desirable. More so for women and non-binary people than men, because after all, we do still live in a patriarchal society where men are always benefiting from more privileges.

If you had asked me 20 years ago: ‘what do you want to be when you grow up?’, my answer would probably have been skinny and famous.

And if you ask me now: ‘what is your life goal?’, I’d probably still answer with ‘to finally be thin and never worry about my weight anymore’.

I was never that child that knew she wanted to be a doctor or a pilot or a firefighter. For as long as I can remember I have wanted to be ‘thin’, whatever that meant at the time. Is it because I grew up around parents that cared a lot about appearance and weight, be it their own or mine? Probably.

Do I blame them for that? Not anymore. I know they, like so many other parents, just did what they thought was best for themselves and for me. They literally did the best they could with what they had at the time.

Do you know who I blame? Society. The patriarchy. The media.

I imagine the struggle that most people feel nowadays surrounding their weight and body image, isn’t something new. Nowadays, society looks down on you when you weigh more than you ‘should. But I have no trouble believing that the same people that are praised and loved in this day and age for being ‘the perfect size’, are the same people that would have been looked down on for being unhealthy and undesirable in the year 1647, for example. Thanks for that, society. Thanks for always deciding what people should look like, making pariahs out of those who don’t fit the standard.

“In a society that profits from your self doubt, liking yourself is a rebellious act.” – Caroline Caldwell

We see it everywhere, women with ‘perfect bodies’ are used to sell everything, not just diet pills and shakes. They’re used to sell food, cars, books, life insurance, and so on.

We see this double standard very clearly in movies too. Remember the funny fat friend? Does she ever get her happy ending with the hot, handsome lead character? If she even gets a love interest, it’s always the lead character’s goofy friend.

In Pitch Perfect, Rebel Wilson (Fat Amy) ends up with the guy everybody dislikes because he’s so annoying, Adam DeVine (Bumper).

Whereas the other way around… remember the movie ‘Knocked Up’? If you haven’t, the short version is that Seth Rogen, aka ‘the goofy friend’ with a six pack in his fridge instead of on his stomach, ‘knocks up’ Katherine Heigl’s character and in the end, because he’s ‘the good guy’, ends up being with her. Yes, Hollywood loves a double standard!

And here is my conflict of interest

The witch in me, the strong woman in me, the rebel in me knows that not conforming to a beauty standard that the patriarchy has imposed on me is an act of freedom, an act of defiance.

Giving the middle finger to the ‘ideal body’ or the ‘beach ready body’ is really something we should all at least want to do.

I do know however that doing it altogether is a different level of bravery altogether.

We know (or think) life will be easier if we conform. If we try another diet, the 17th diet, ‘the one that will finally work’ (a very lousy Friends episode, if you ask me!).

Because even though eventually, deep down, we know we will gain the weight back (that’s just how our bodies work!), for a few glorious weeks or even months we can walk through life knowing nobody will judge us if we eat a burger in public or if we load 2 bags of crisps into our shopping cart. We remember how amazing it feels to buy those new clothes 2 sizes smaller, only to be incredibly upset again a few months later when they don’t fit anymore.

So, here’s what we should do instead

We should say a big ‘F**k you!’ to the unrealistic beauty standard that we’re expected to live up to.

We should recognise that the patriarchy are responsible for trying to impose a certain weight and size upon us, not with the people that look different to us, be it because they live in larger or smaller bodies than we do.

We should be furious with the diet industry for making billions of dollars/pounds/euros (etc) off our insecurities, instead of with our bodies for not fitting into the size that we want them to fit in.

We should wear what we want, when we want to, also when the clothes that we bought don’t fit us anymore. We should buy the bigger size and go outside and roller skate or run or dance or go to the beach, instead of crying in front of the mirror.

Clothes are meant to fit our bodies, not the other way around!

We should buy the luscious body creams because they make us feel amazing, not because they ‘tone’ us or because they ‘remove cellulite’.

We should spend our money on bath bombs, not on diet pills.

We should let our inner goddess out, our inner witch, our inner warrior princess, our inner ‘theyity’, and we should let them rebel. 

We should allow them, no, encourage them, to break the mould and roar!




Moose is a good friend of Greener Beauty. A vegan activist for all souls, Moose is a beautiful person who says it as it is! Give her blog a follow!

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