Brandon Fisher, CJ Kirkwood & Faizan

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Designing Women - Part XXXI

Written by: Brandon Fisher

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I am offended by the magazines in the checkout lines at the grocery store. I keep seeing the “Celebrities Without Make-up” gross out edition. I am not offended because it's unflattering, I am offended because they assume women need to be on the top of their game all the time. Of course Nicole Kidman doesn’t look like a movie star when she’s walking her child at 6 in the morning. Why are you expectations of these women so high? And you know men? We never wear make-up; we look like this all the time. I also see the ones like, “Nerdy Celebrity High School Photos” edition. Of course Tina Fey looked nerdy when she was 16. She was in high school. That would be a way creepier edition if it was “Top 10 sexiest celebrity sophomores.”

All these magazines in the checkout line just give women negative self images. They might as well put weight loss drinks right next to them as cross-promotion and build a place to reallocate the potato chips they were going to buy, but are no longer going to. You could say these magazines hurt sales, because people opt to not buy those chips, but chips are way cheaper than diet shakes. It’s cheap to get fat - it’s expensive to stay thin.

If you’ve ever watched any comedy special from the 80s, you know the, “ways to get your man’s attention/ways to please your man” magazines have been widely documented as bullshit. All these articles written by women are fiction. We are much easier to please than you think. Most of these articles are written by women who have over thought the subject. If you actually believe these articles to be gospel, you have bigger problems than pleasing your man.

You can say that women aren’t actually affected by these magazines, but they totally are. According to a new study, “women who read sex-related magazine articles from popular women’s magazines like Cosmopolitan are less likely to view premarital sex as a risky behavior. Additionally, the women who are exposed to these articles are more supportive of sexual behavior that both empowers women and prioritizes their own sexual pleasure.” Okay. Maybe there is some benefit to these magazines. I get it now. These magazines are as much for men as it is for women. Though I do think there should be positive self-affirming magazines in existence. Take for example my faux-magazine Cougar Beat.

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