Big

There is something that has been bugging me for a while, and I hope I don’t bore you all by going into detail. It concerns the nude model London Andrews, someone who I think is one of the most beautiful people I’ve ever seen. She’s also a lovely lass, please do go to her blog here and read about her escapades, obviously due to the nature of her job it’s not exactly SFW but if you’re reading my blog you shouldn’t mind that.

Now, onto the fly in my ointment, if you visit a tumblr like this one dedicated to London you will see a lot of her photos come from sites billing themselves as being about BBW’s, her earlier more pornographic shoots often seem to come from similar types of sites, ones that specialise in BBW’s.

Now if you don’t know BBW stands for Big Beautiful Woman, and herein lies the problem, London, is by no stretch of the imagination big. What has it come to that just because a woman has curves she’s lumped into the “big” category.

This is London, and admittedly I am no medical professional, but to me she doesn’t look overweight, I would say she is at the top of the ideal weight/height/build band, as in if she put on a dress size then yes she may be considered overweight, and if she dropped say two then she would be underweight. But as things stand she isn’t, and that’s what bugs me.

I would describe myself as a BBW (if I had to put myself in a box) I’m overweight, I need too loose weight, but I’m still pretty and sexy and beautiful. London’s figure, while extraordinary in it’s voluptuousness, is not extraordinary in terms of weight. So why is she being classed as a BBW?

As an anthropologist I could probably write a book on this, but as I don’t want to bore you all to death I’ll keep it short and sweet. Western society has been so deluged by images of slim, tall, boy-shaped models that when we see a woman with a different type of figure and a healthy amount of body-fat, we see her as different, not as normal, which she is.

Women come in all shapes and sizes, even if you just look at women who are in the healthy-weight category. But the media, fashion industry et al seem to forget this. Even, or especially women’s magazines, remember the huge outcry (of joy, I might add) when a model with an actual tum, was in a cosmo issue? It’s crazy that a magazine as big as cosmo don’t even have a section of body shapes in their models, and when they do, when they actually show a woman with a little tum, that pretty much all women have, especially ones who’ve had kids, it becomes a huge issue.

Now admittedly the only women’s magazine that I buy is Filament, which isn’t big on photos of women*, so maybe things have changed in the past few years in magazines, but they haven’t on the internet. Women like London and like Teer Wade are lumped into the “plus-size” & “BBW” categories, just because they are bigger than a size 10 and/or have a lower waist:hip ratio than 1**, and call me crazy, but that don’t seem right.

I’m sure there are lots of people who’ve written about this in a much more in depth way than I have, but it’s been something I’ve needed to get out of my brain for a while. And who knows, maybe I’ll manage to write an actual essay next year on it. If I do I’ll post it up here just to really bore you all.

*Though it must be said their selection of male models cuts pretty much across the build spectrum.

** In western society a .7 WHR is preferred by men, as it indicates health, fecundity etc

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