TGIF: Are You There, World? It’s Me, Tina. Without Makeup.

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On Angelina Jolie’s leg, posing for Facebook pictures and exposing the “real me.”

It’s been an AWESOME week to be a woman.

Apart from the insane media coverage of Angelina Jolie’s leg at the Oscars (epic low for humanity), I have enjoyed watching women stand up and stick it to The Man.

I want to take a quick minute to say:

Source: baubauhaus.com via Tina on Pinterest

Dear Angelina,

Haters gonna hate.

I’m so sorry about the spoofs, Twitter account, “Legbombing” Pinterest page, memes and TV shows making fun of your leg.

I say this sincerely and un-ironically: it must suck to wake up every morning and hear that your leg is on the cover of yet another newspaper, when women are being raped in Congo.

Ignore these bozos. Let one of them win an Academy Award, two Screen Actors Guild Awards, three Golden Globe Awards and be named Hollywood’s highest-paid actress by Forbes; then they can talk.

Love you girl,
Teen
__________

Coming back to task at hand …

Women were such rockstars this week. They are:

  1. Speaking up.
    “Dear Oscar: Women Have Stories, Too
  2. Gathering allies.
    “Tumblr Takes Stand Against Eating Disorder Blogs”
  3. Standing up for each other.
    “Why We Should Stop Snarking On Angelina Jolie’s Thinness”
  4. Embracing their imperfections.
    “Want to be happy? Stop trying to be perfect
  5. Telling the truth.
    “My Journey with Weight Control.”

The last link is a revealing ballsy piece, written by our very own SheLoves writer, Claire De Boer.

Here’s an excerpt from her article that made me choke on my afternoon apple:

“I can’t count the number of times I have sat around a table with girlfriends, a delicious selection of mouthwatering finger foods under our noses, and listened as most of us have justified our decision to eat or not eat the food.

I went for a run today.
I didn’t eat dinner, so I can indulge.
I’ve been good all week, so I deserve a night off.
I shouldn’t … I really need to lose a few pounds.

Whatever the response, so many of us are sitting around that table justifying our decision to eat or not eat. I have never heard the same conversation around a table of men.”

Mid February (coincidentally on my birthday), another SheLoves writer, powerhouse Sarah Bessey wrote, “For Shame or Freedom?” “Shame is insidious, ” she says, “because it can sound reasonable to our own ears, but it always ends in the same place: a prison.”

She goes on to say that as women:

“…we weave a banner of love as nouns and verbs to guard and protect,
to trail-blaze, for our mothers, our daughters:
you are beautiful, you have worth, you are valuable – NOW.
I love you, I see you, I hear you, my sister.

Facebook Me vs. Real Me

Sarah’s words, “I see you,” jumped out at me. I thought about how rarely, I let people see the real me. I hate being seen. I hate been photographed. Maybe I’m extra critical because I’m a photographer. If it’s not the right angle, the right light and the right posture, I want the earth to open up and swallow me whole.

This fear is magnified with the magic of Facebook. Anyone can upload and tag a nasty picture of me with a double-chin, back-fat, eyes closed and mouth wide open. Sure, I could “untag” myself from the picture, but I’ll always know that it’s still floating out there on the scary Internet.

Like most mortals, I’m guilty of putting up a cute but not too pose-y picture of myself as a profile picture, like so:

Please note, the flattering soft light coming from my window making me look like a cast member of “Touched by an Angel.” Truth be told, I often worry that people who I “meet” on the internet, will be disappointed when they meet me in person. Alas, I can’t bottle that gorgeous light to follow me around!

I read an article this week titled, “Almost Half Of Women Don’t Like Their Faces Unless They’re Spackled With Makeup.” Dude … that just makes me sad. Spackled?!

And hey, if this is what Supermodel Kate Moss looks like without makeup and Photoshop, then why do I give myself such a hard time?

If more of us women stopped hiding behind our staged “Perfect Profile Picture,” we could start to reverse the cycle of self-hate and fear, and run wildly into the arms of love and freedom.

Some of you might remember that my One Word for 2012 is “enough.” I’m learning that I am: strong enough, smart enough, brave enough, loved enough …[squirm]even beautiful enough. Just as I am.

“We can’t look to the world to restore our worth; we’re here to restore our worth to the world. The world outside us can reflect our glory, but it cannot create it. It cannot crown us. Only God can crown us, and he already has.” — Marianne Williamson

In a moment of pure insanity I thought, if my beautiful friend Claire can be honest about how many times she has weighed herself, I can be honest about what I look like without makeup.

So this is the real me …
Glasses
Pimple on my cheek
Angry Vein on my forehead
Bags under my eyes
Ratty pajamas
No makeup.
No Photoshop.
No flattering angle.

BOOM.

Pssst … if you click on the picture, it gets even larger.

And this is (round-faced) me, after I realized that this idea was totally crazy and I was going to regret it in the morning!

Guess what? It’s morning. And, I don’t regret it!

“A tulip doesn’t strive to impress anyone. It doesn’t struggle to be different than a rose. It doesn’t have to. It is different. And there’s room in the garden for every flower. You didn’t have to struggle to make your face different than anyone else’s on earth. It just is. You are unique because you were created that way.” — Marianne Williamson

______________________________

OH-OH-OH, I have a crazy idea!!!

Dear ones, I (lovingly) dare you to take a picture of yourself without makeup and:

a. Post it on our SheLoves Facebook page.
b. Share it on Twitter. You can copy/paste this tweet:
“Hey World! It’s Me, _____[insert name]. Without Makeup. #iamenough [insert picture]
c. Or “Pin it” on Pinterest. #iamenough

Gleep! I’m so excited. I would seriously love to see your beautiful faces, just as you are.

Together we can define a new standard for beauty; one that celebrates our curves, stretchmarks, scary veins, wrinkles and laugh lines.

Love you more than Ginger Grapefruit Curd,
xoxo,
Teen

To read more TGIFs from Tina: Click here.

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Tina Francis
My name is Tina. Loved ones call me: Teen. Words are my chocolate. Music, my caramel. Photography, my bread. Girlfriends, my butter. Confession: Some girls dream about Manolo Blahniks or their next Hermes bag. Not me. I dream of freshly baked bread, perfectly barbecued meat & steaming bowls of Pho. My dream lover *cue Mariah Carey song* is someone who would read out a menu to me in Barry White’s baritone voice. I celebrate food, ask for help, interrupt conversations, laugh and cry hard, acknowledge the elephant in most rooms, fight for the underdog and believe in the power of storytelling. I was born and raised in Dubai and currently live in the beautiful city of Vancouver, known for some of the best sushi in the world.
Tina Francis
Tina Francis