It’s Time to #LoveYourSelfie! #F

This post originally appeared on January 23, 2014 written by Gretchen Edwards-Bodmer.

If you have a camera phone then you’ve probably taken a selfie. You’ve probably also posted that picture to social media, and your friends and family responded by telling you how awesome and beautiful you are. It’s a wonderful feeling, isn’t is? Unfortunately, we’re not used to receiving positive body image message through mainstream culture. Instead, we’re used to having the “beauty industry” tell us through ads and with Photoshopped models that we’re not good enough, but that we can fit in to their narrow standards of beauty if we just buy their products. They trample on our self-esteem in order to make a buck.

To counter these negative messages, Dove released a short film called “Selfie” that was recently featured on the Today Show. The film interviews girls and their moms about redefining beauty and, as a response, encourages them to take selfies. I was glad that this film spoke to both moms and daughters and that they discussed how sometimes moms unintentionally pass along their insecurities about their beauty to their daughters. It’s hard enough to deal with the negative messages in the media about our bodies, we shouldn’t have to also deal with those messages regurgitated to us by those that we love.

#loveyourselfie I’m my own kind of beautiful!

— Alisa Vesely (@TheAlisaVesely) January 22, 2014

Dove took the selfies from their participants and hung them in a public gallery. The company invited folks to write what they liked about each others’ pictures on sticky notes, and asked participants to comment about how beautiful the person is (sort of like a live version of Facebook).


— \m/ish (@michelleDeRose) September 26, 2013

 This made me think of Operation Beautiful where you leave sticky notes with uplifting messages in public places for random people to find.

#Beauty comes from within, from a warm & caring heart. #orangeroom #loveyourselfie#saynotomakeup #kcco

— probably a Greyjoy (@chivettelo) January 22, 2014

There’s been a lot of debate about whether selfies are a “cry for help” or “tiny bursts of girl pride”. There’s even a #365FeministSelfie challenge, created by veteran blogger Veronica Arreola (@veronicaeye). With all that’s out there about selfie culture, I see selfies as empowering because we are in control of how we want to be seen as opposed to how others want us to be seen.

@TODAYshow #LoveYourSelfie natural beauty all day!

— Eva Miller (@EvaMende9) January 22, 2014

To be seen, in and of itself, is empowering right? I hardly ever see anyone with my similar body type in the media, and I know people like me exist because I see them everyday. There’s power in being able to add your picture to the media landscape that purports narrowly defined beauty standards. We now can send a message to the “beauty industry” that they’ve gotten it wrong about what is real and beautiful.

#todayshow today and everyday…loving me! #loveyourselfie

— DIVASTYLE (@DIVASTYLE5) January 22, 2014

That said, however, selfies are more than just about beauty. We don’t have to spend all of our time and money trying to look like the models in the magazine ads. We are so much more than our appearance. We are smart, funny, creative, curious, generous and badass. All of those characteristics and more can be shown through selfies, all while redefining for ourselves the value of beauty.

#loveyourselfie my mom told never care about what people look like I’m 15 and I’ve never touched make up

— Taylor goodwin (@rockingbaby9297) January 22, 2014


I think it’s about that time to #LoveYourSelfie.