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Struggles of a Feminine Feminist

For as long as I can remember, I have been a very feminine girl – a girly girl. I always have a nude pink manicure, lipgloss, and a perfectly matching outfit. I complete the look with shimmering eyeshadow and blonde highlights. And, for as long as I can remember, women have patronized me it.

I believe that women should have the same rights and opportunities as men and make equal pay. I believe that women should be treated with respect in the workplace, in modern media, and in their daily lives. Women should have the choice to be whatever they want to be. I am a feminist.

Prevalent media generally defines “what a woman should be” as a thin model with a seemingly unattainable body type and perfect skin, with the underlying idea that a girl needs to change herself to be accepted by those standards. I recognize these flaws in popular belief and try to contribute to their change, but I also choose to dress and carry myself in a feminine way, just for myself. I feel more confident with a little mascara and a high waisted skirt, and should not feel judged walking into a meeting as another woman whispers, “oh, I bet she likes writing about clothes, makeup and boys.” 

For your information, yes, I do enjoy writing on those topics. Some American clothing companies in other countries pay workers an unlivable wage in hazardous work environments, many makeup brands make twenty foundation shades for lighter skin tones and only three for women of color, and boys, well all relationships are just freakin’ interesting and modern dating is a relatable enigma to everyone. These are things that I should not be ashamed to talk about and if I want to wear makeup from a diverse makeup brand while I do it (looking at you Fenty, you’re killing it Rihanna) then I should be able to.

If someone patronizes another woman for being feminine, they are simply a bad feminist. Feminism is about having the choice, as a woman, to be whatever you want to be. This means the same amount of respect should be given to the woman wearing combat boots and baggy tees as the woman in glasses and a cardigan, or the woman in a pink blouse and tight skirt. Women should support all women. Someone assuming that a girl is less intelligent, capable, or talented because of how she presents herself goes against the very ideals that feminism stands for. A woman should never be made to feel inferior because of her appearance, sexuality, or race, right?

In order for a change to occur in modern society, women need to support women. A feminist with glossed lips and curled hair is just as valid as a feminist with a shaved head and no makeup; both are fully capable and authentic.

If you are a feminine girl, keep looking however you wish to, even if you fall into a stereotype. If you are a woman judging others for being girly, try to be cognizant of why… and to stop. Every woman is capable of changing modern culture, and has the right to be whoever the hell she wants to be.

All images via Giphy.com 

Maddie is a recently graduated English major and is excited to enter the publishing industry.
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