It might be hilarious to hear gorgeous celebrities insult themselves while dressed to the nines on the red carpet (we're looking at you, Jennifer Lawrence), but the truth about 'body snarking' is a lot more hurtful.
As Kellogg's Special K revealed in a survey conducted with Angus Reid, 66 per cent of Canadian women admit to engaging in 'fat talk' — negative discussions about their own or others' bodies that revolve around their supposed shape and flaws. Forty-seven per cent say they do it once a week, meaning this kind of negativity is more than a habit; it's an actual topic of conversation.
In one of comedian Amy Schumer's most hilarious sketches, a group of women stands around giving each other compliments, only to brush them off and insult themselves in response. Most women can easily recognize themselves in these characters, but it diminishes our self-esteem from as young as nine years of age, according to a study by the Candian Women's Foundation.
In the infographic below, Kellogg's demonstrates the prevalence and potential harm of making deprecating remarks, even when they're about yourself.
The recent ads from Kellogg's, which demonstrate their attempt to help women regain self-esteem (and yes, to sell cereal at the same time), are a push in the right direction, as are their tips for stopping body snarking before it happens.
So what does that mean for the average woman? We're going to suggest starting by accepting compliments when they're doled out and making a concerted effort to watch the red carpets of awards season with only admiring eyes.
"When I wake up in the morning, I feel just like any other insecure 24-year old girl. Then I say, 'You're Lady Gaga, you get up and walk the walk today.'"
"Girls of all kinds can be beautiful -- from the thin, plus-sized, short, very tall, ebony to porcelain-skinned; the quirky, clumsy, shy, outgoing and all in between. It's not easy though because many people still put beauty into a confining, narrow box ... think outside of the box ... pledge that you will look in the mirror and find the unique beauty in you."
“God made a very obvious choice when he made me voluptuous; why would I go against what he decided for me?"
Jamie Lee Curtis
“The more I like me, the less I want to pretend to be other people.”
"I think that whatever size or shape body you have, it's important to embrace it and get down! The female body is something that's so beautiful. I wish women would be proud of their bodies and not diss other women for being proud of theirs!"
"This is a call to arms. A call to be gentle, to be forgiving, to be generous with yourself. The next time you look into the mirror, try to let go of the story line that says you’re too fat or too sallow, too ashy or too old, your eyes are too small or your nose too big; just look into the mirror and see your face. When the criticism drops away, what you will see then is just you, without judgment, and that is the first step toward transforming your experience of the world.”
“You shouldn’t be pressured into trying to be thin by the fashion industry, because they only want models that are like human mannequins ... but you have to remember that it’s not practical or possible for an everyday woman to look like that. Being size zero is a career in itself so we shouldn’t try and be like them. It’s not realistic and it’s not healthy.”
"I’m proud of my body. My body weight will always be something that I’ll struggle with for the rest of my life, but I’m finally in a good place and learning to love me for me, and not somebody else's standards."
"Everything you see I owe to spaghetti."
"I'm pretty comfortable with my body. I'm imperfect. The imperfections are there. People are going to see them, but I take the view you only live once."
"I think that natural beauty is very charismatic ... I just believe in enhancing who we are rather than trying to manipulate or change it too much."
“I have a crumble baby belly, boobs are worse for wear after two kids ... I'm doing all right. I'm 33. I don't look in the mirror and go, 'Oh, I look fantastic!' Of course I don't. Nobody is perfect. I just don't believe in perfection. But I do believe in saying, 'This is who I am and look at me not being perfect!' I'm proud of that.'"
"I might have a little bit of cellulite. I might not be toned everywhere. I might struggle in this area or that. But accepting that just empowers me. I'm trying to eat better -- which is a struggle. I like carbs. I didn't [used to] work out. I do now, even when I'd rather sleep in. I'm a firm believer that you should be your best you ... The message [of this shoot] is embrace your curves and who you are. I feel proud if young girls look up to me and say, ‘I’m curvy, and I’m proud of it now.'"
"Confidence is sexy! I'm comfortable with my body and not afraid to show it off."
"I have learned more and more to enjoy my body when I have a few extra pounds on, just being more voluptuous. I say, focus on the body part that you feel most comfortable about."
"I guess my mom raised me right. She was very celebratory of her body. I never heard her once say, 'I feel fat.' Back when I was modeling, the first time I went to Italy I was having cappuccinos every day, and I gained 15 pounds. And I felt gorgeous! I would take my clothes off in front of the mirror and be like, Oh, I look like a woman. And I felt beautiful, and I never tried to lose it, 'cause I loved it."
“My smile is my favorite part of my body. I think a smile can make your whole body."
“One day I had to sit down with myself and decide that I loved myself no matter what my body looked like and what other people thought about my body. I got tired of hating myself."
“I love my snaggle fangs. They give me character and character is sexy.”