All-American Muslim: A New Show Unveils Muslim Life in the Midwest

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By Ophira Edut Hey, non-Arab America, guess what? There are Muslims living in the U.S.A. and some of ‘em are just like us. At least, that’s what TLC’s new reality show All-American Muslim is attempting to portray. It’s groundbreaking…and it isn’t. … [Read more...]

Face Value? Study Claims Makeup Makes Women Appear More “Competent”

The NY Times reported on a study of 25 Black, White, and Hispanic women between the ages of 20-50 who were photographed wearing various levels of makeup.

By Ophira Edut Does the mascara make the woman? The New York Times published results of a study (see the article here) claiming that a moderate amount of makeup "increases people’s perceptions of a woman’s likability, her competence and (provided she does not overdo it) her trustworthiness." … [Read more...]

Fashion’s Night Out: When Will We Have a Fat-shionable Fall?

F-No, we won't go! Or will we?

By Ophira Edut Summer's about over. The red carpets are rolling out (hello, MTV Video Music Awards), which means sucking, tucking and plucking season has begun again. The new fall shows, with a fresh crop of homogenous stars, will be premiering. (Oh, how I'm counting the minutes until Glee's third season.) New York City, where I … [Read more...]

Michelle Obama’s “My Plate” Leaves Us Hungry

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by Ophira Edut Lights, camera, action! It's...oh. It's my middle school pamphlet on the five basic food groups, right? Wait, no, it's my Weight Watchers tracker where I can enter what I just ate into an online widget. Cool! What? It's not that? Oh, oh, now I see: it's the First Lady's big healthy eating initiative, … [Read more...]

“Bikini Bodies” & The Ugh of Swimsuit Season

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By Ophira Edut For years, I dreaded the arrival of spring magazines, knowing they'd be filled with pages of flirty, colorful and teeny bikinis fitted to fat-free model bodies. I was a girl with cellulite, Beyonce thighs (when she's eating her favorite southern dishes, that is) and a tum that more than coquettishly peeped over … [Read more...]

Using Cosmetic Surgery Stop Bullying?

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A few weeks ago, ABCNews.com reported an article "When Is Cosmetic Surgery the Answer to Bullyling?" (Um, never?) We particularly liked this smart response by blogger Shark-Fu of Angry Black Bitch, who allowed us to reprint this with her permission. When I was a wee bitch I was bullied mercilessly for all things related to my … [Read more...]

Khloe Can’t Keep Up with the Kardashians’ Body Standards

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By Ophira Edut I admit it: I kind of keep up with the sisters K. It's fascinating to watch size, class, race and gender issues all publicly collide in a series of ever-spinning spinoffs. Here are the olive-skinned Kardashians of ambiguous ethnicity, "white" and up-speaking enough to hang with the L.A. celebutantes, yet … [Read more...]

The Right to Wear Bikinis: Who Owns It?

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File this one under "clueless media moment": today's People.com features Sara Rue, host of the wish-they-wouldn't-go-there reality show Shedding for the Wedding, triumphantly showing off her weight loss in a bikini. "Only a year and a half after she began the Jenny Craig program, Sara Rue has lost more than 50 lbs. – and 4 dress … [Read more...]

Period Panties & Body Shame: An OCD Journey Through My Underwear Drawer

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by Ophira Edut   Today, a small revolution happened. And it was in my underwear drawer. I threw out a pair of baggy, stretched-out, used-to-be-bikini but now verging on "granny panties" underwear that I bought at Gap Body literally a decade ago. They were cute in their heyday, light blue with flowers. And they've … [Read more...]

Annoying Trend: Celebs Play Dumb About Body Image

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By Ophira Edut "I don't get this obsession with weight," Eva Longoria Parker tells Glamour (February, 2009). The actress, whose tight outfits inspired tabloids to speculate that she's pregnant, is the latest actress to pretend that she just doesn't understand the whole "thin is in" fuss. … [Read more...]