Tess Holliday, THAT Cosmo Cover, and Tokenism….

I’ve just seen a post on Facebook with these words accompanying the image above:

“However, I want to take this opportunity to ask you all to make sure you go out and actually buy a copy of Cosmo this month. ❤️

This issue needs to do well or else we’re going to start hearing comments like “this is the reason we don’t put plus-sized people on the covers, they don’t sell well”.

Meaning that we’re at risk of going back to a time where the only cover stars our children will see are size 6 blondes with tanned skin…

Meaning that any little girl who doesn’t look like that is made to feel inferior and like she doesn’t fit in…

Meaning that those little girls will be at an even greater risk of things like self harm, eating disorders and low self esteem…

This isn’t about whether or not you like Tess Holliday or even if you like Cosmo, it’s about so much more than that.

So, please, head down to your local corner shop and grab a copy 

I love Tess and have been a fan of hers for ages.

I adore her confidence and style, especially her vintage looks – check her page out on Facebook – some of her photoshoots are freaking amazing and I wish I looked as good as she does and felt as good about myself as she does!

Her whole message is “F*** Your Beauty Standards!”

The whole ‘slimmer MUST = fit and healthy’ thing that so many of her haters love to trot out kind of annoys me too.

I bet Tess is FAR fitter than I am right now (after all, she can carry out a demanding work schedule), whereas I’ve had to give up any working that involves getting up off my arse!

My health is the worst it’s EVER been, and my health issues first really started to get bad when I was a VERY SLIM size 10 and probably the most physically active I’ve ever been too, working physically demanding jobs AND renovating my house.

In a few short years, I’ve gone from that to not being able to manage simple strolls along flat areas very well any more either and sometimes need to use a mobility scooter.

I can get breathless, exhausted and needing to rest, just getting up off the sofa these days!

So slimmer most definitely does NOT always equal fit and healthy, so can people please stop speculating that she must be SO unhealthy, just because she’s larger!!

I don’t buy Cosmo though, and I still won’t, regardless of who is on the cover (well, maybe I MIGHT, just ONCE, if *I* was on the cover LMAO!), because I can’t abide the messages inside the covers.

The whole magazine is chock-full of, what I feel are, misogynistic, guilt-making, shame-inducing adverts and articles, that are designed to make women feel less than worthy unless they have perfect make-up, hair, clothes etc!

And I gave up buying into that shit years ago!!

If I want to make myself feel like a shitty excuse for a woman, I can do that brilliantly with the crap my own mind tries to tell me every day, and that I am constantly fighting against, without giving Cosmo any money for the privilege of doing that to me 😂

I genuinely applaud Tess for her message on self-acceptance, especially as it’s something I am still working on a lot myself.

But for me, this whole exercise by Cosmo stinks of the same kind of bullshit pulled by that bitchy, popular girl every high school seems to have, who decides, for one week or so, to work on being a ‘nicer’ person and looks around for a ‘project’ in her school she can be befriend, purely for the benefit of boosting her own ego that she’s being ‘inclusive’ and nice, whilst still bitching about every other ‘socially unacceptable’ student.

And the next time she is called a ‘bitch’ she will be genuinely shocked and say: “But I was nice to the school fattie/social outcast/ugly person only the other week :O !”.

And everyone around her, for a few weeks, seems to think: “Awww, that’s really nice that she’s being so kind to X”, which makes even the socially unaccepted ones perhaps feel a little more well-disposed towards her; “Maybe she’s turned over a new leaf, maybe she’s not that bad after all…”

But having seen that kind of behaviour on far too many occasions, it feels like Cosmo are actually tokenising Tess, to boost their own ‘equality’ credentials, and to get a boost in sales this month from every woman who has ever felt light-years from the Cosmo idealised version of beauty.

And the excitement Tess obviously feels about being ‘accepted’ for once by the media bitchy popular girl that is Cosmo is something EVERYBODY who has ever felt socially ‘unacceptable’ and once been on the receiving end of a one-off “Hello” from the popular girl, will surely identify with.

I hate to break it to you, Tess, but Cosmo probably STILL doesn’t want to be your BFF because, under that glorious cover with you looking amazing, as you do in EVERYTHING you’re on, Cosmo still has the heart of the bitchy popular girl who rips holes in the soul of everyone who doesn’t meet ALL HER beauty standards…:(

You see, on the one hard, there’s an article about how wonderful it is to have her as their cover girl.

Why the feedback to our Tess Holliday shoot proves this is the magazine cover we all needed

“Not only does it acknowledge that we exist, but that we exist in a way that isn’t for your entertainment.”

AUG 30, 2018

From <https://www.cosmopolitan.com/uk/fashion/a22872539/tess-holliday-cosmopolitan-magazine-cover-uk/>

But within the very same month, there’s also articles like

AUG 17, 2018

The 7 best retinol creams for fighting fine lines

And preventing them appearing in the first place.

From <https://www.cosmopolitan.com/uk/beauty-hair/>

So, through this single writer’s Cosmo-tinted glasses, it’s now acceptable to be overweight (because, from the subtext of her article, she’s not supermodel thin herself).

But she’s STILL telling those of us with ‘fine lines’ that WE’RE socially unacceptable (presumably she hasn’t reached an age of having any wrinkles yet!), because we must read her article on how to fight our fine lines and prevent them appearing!

Totally Cosmo-unacceptable me! In all my ‘nose full of snot thanks to a cold, unbleached ginger hair roots, fine lines, spots, freckles, no make-up, been up most of the night with the toddler screaming, unshowered, unbrushed hair, coping with chronic constant pain, weighing almost 80kg, feeling like utter shit most of the time’ glorious self’!

I’m not deliberately picking on this individual writer per se, but just pointing out the mixed messages that even ONE writer for Cosmo sends!

Our money has power, and we should use it for good.

But I feel passionate about NOT giving it to any organisation that promotes the kind of messages that go against our own values, just because they occasionally deign to tokenise an under-represented member of society, whilst still pushing the same agenda they have always had.

It’d be like me buying a Nestle product, just because they happen to feature a breastfeeding woman on the packaging one month, whilst they’re still pushing their agenda of devaluing breastfeeding to promote formula milk profits.

Rather than giving them MORE money and attention when they ‘make the effort’ to be more inclusive, we could instead ALL vote with our feet and stop buying anything that goes against our integrity and the values we want to see MORE of in the world.

So Cosmo, you STILL don’t get a penny out of me, no matter how much you feature more ‘diversity’ on your covers, and I won’t fund your messages of non-acceptance between them, because “F*** Your STILL Limited Beauty Standards”…

Signed, Ms Cosmo-Unworthy, But Still Acceptable… 

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