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I Love My Haters

Recently I ran across an article on Revelest.com titled:

Blogger Points Out Sexist Double Standard In Wake Of Tess Holliday Cover Backlash

By Emerald Pellot

Tess Holliday, a plus size model and just overall amazing person received quite a bit of backlash over her cover on Cosmopolitan Uk. As outlined in the article, most of the flack came from people who felt her being on the cover was endorsing being obese. If you want to read the article here’s the link:

https://www.revelist.com/internet/tess-holliday-cosmopolitan-backlash/13426/of-course-piers-morgan-was-one-of-the-trolls/5

For anyone who doesn’t know, Tess has always been an advocate for body positivity and embracing herself/her body no matter what the haters say. That is the mentality behind the #effyourbeautystandards movement that she and many women (and men) around the world have started to embrace. At it’s core this movement is just about acceptance of yourself and letting other people know that regardless of what they think, you still love yourself.

I believe that it’s for that very reason, that the backlash she’s getting is so disgusting to me. Disgusting sounds like a strong word right? Well I think it fits this situation perfectly. The cover is obviously meant to promote self-love and body positivity, but people turned it into a weight issue. Let’s be honest, although people say it’s about health it’s not. In a society that has finally started to embrace more diverse types of beauty, people have looked for more politically correct ways of insulting people.

How is a woman loving the skin she’s in a way for her to promote obesity? How is she the poster girl for being unhealthy? It’s because people are threatened. They try to mask it behind “concern” for her well-being but we all know that’s not what this is about. This is about other people’s insecurities and them being uncomfortable.

As hard as it is to believe, there are people who genuinely feel offended by other people and their confidence. They have fought so hard to look a certain way or live their life a certain way so that they can finally feel accepted within society’s standards of what is an acceptable life. Then here comes a woman who has decided that she loves each and every inch of herself when all she does is live her life.

There are also those who find plus size women disgusting. They can’t fathom how anyone would want them. In their minds plus size women cannot be attractive and they should be ashamed of themselves. This type of mentality is more common than you would think. More often than not, the trolls with fake profiles are the ones who boldly leave comments like this. Others just like it and keep it moving because they are afraid of the backlash they could receive.

I can’t help but feel that their frustrations are severely misplaced and insulting. They have twisted her message of empowerment to suit their needs and I am not here for it. The reason I chose the picture I did for the featured picture is because I want people to see the cellulite, the stomach, the thighs, the scars, and the stretch marks. I want people to see my story. I love who I am and you don’t have to.

If you want to hear more about this tune into my podcast Vitamin Key. Let me know what you think. Also, don’t forget to comment, like, share, and follow!

Here’s the link:

https://anchor.fm/keyra-dominique

P.S. My Podcast Vitamin Key is also available on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, and Google Podcasts

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Stop Hating On the Confidence

I always advocate for self-confidence and body positivity because I know how important it is for people to find love for themselves. There’s nothing sadder than believing you have to ask others for permission to love yourself. I see so many people do this and when they don’t get the recognition they seek, they fall into depression. I have been in that place myself and I know just how easy it is to fall into the habit of looking to others for the approval that you can’t find within yourself.

What’s crazier is that people actually want you to seek their permission to love yourself! Have you ever noticed how people want someone who is confident, but also want them to seek their permission to be confident? They want someone who loves themselves, but they put people down if they don’t fit their criteria. People want you to look a certain kind of way, dress a certain kind of way, or live a certain kind of way in order to gain their approval. I refuse to do it and so should you. You don’t need anyone to tell you that it’s okay to love yourself.

I have seen men and women alike post a picture of themselves and take the picture down because of comments that were negative. Sometimes the comments came from total strangers and sometimes they came from people that they know. When they uploaded the picture they loved it but it only took a matter of minutes for them to lose that confidence. It’s extremely easy to sit behind a keyboard and talk badly about others, especially when you don’t even like yourself. Social media has led to what I call “troll culture”. These people make it a point to troll others and make people feel bad about themselves but guess what? Not anymore.

Take your power back! Take your confidence back! Take your self-love back! Tell the trolls to STOP HATING ON THE CONFIDENCE and find some. You weren’t put on this earth to be judged by the people around you, especially if that judgement is making you unhappy. I want people to see that I have stretch marks. I want them to see that I have fat. I want them to see that my hair is kinky. I want them to see my eczema and acne scars. I WANT PEOPLE TO SEE ME!

The reason for that is, I want others to embrace who they are without worrying about what everyone thinks. I know it’s not easy but trust me it is so worth it. You will see a lot of differences in the way that you think and act. That shirt you didn’t think you could wear? You’ll wear it. Those shoes you thought you were too tall for? You’ll wear them. The outfit you’ve put off wearing because you didn’t think you could pull it off? You will rock it and dare a hater to hate.

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I talk more on this subject in my podcast Stop Hating On the Confidence. Be sure to listen and let me know what you think. Also, don’t forget to comment, like, share, and follow!

Posted in blog, Uncategorized

Unboxing Part 2 (Summer Haul)

Okay so as promised here is my post on my second unboxing but this time there’s a twist! The company I am trying out this time is Gwynnie Bee. Unlike Dia & Co., I didn’t try the full service because they are a bit pricier compared to my budget. Since I am trying the 30 day trial you can only try two things at a time. I’m not too upset about that because the way they do their boxing service is different.

With Dia & Co. you try on the five items sent in your box and get five days to try them on before sending them back. If you do not want everything in your box be sure to send back what you don’t want within the time frame. If you use Gwynnie Bee it acts an online closet of sorts. You are basically renting the clothes that you wear for a set price each month. If hearing the word rent turns you off, remember a lot of celebrities do essentially the same thing when attending events. So just think of yourself as an A-list celebrity trying on brands from different companies.

Gwynnie Bee allows you to pick items you really like online or using the app and you add them to your online closet. If you’re especially fond of something, be sure to mark it as top priority in order to increase the likelihood that it is what they send to you first. Their pricing is based on the number of items you can check out at a time. For example, to have three items out at a time means you would be paying $95 a month.

I will include a picture below of how the pricing works:

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As you can see, the pricing is not for the faint of heart but it might be worth trying first for 30 days like I did and deciding for yourself whether it is a service you want to continue. It’s my goal to try several of these types of services and give my honest opinion of it. Besides, who doesn’t the idea of shopping made easy. Just like Dia & Co., you can send these back, exchange them, and buy them a lower retail price if you fall in love with it.

Now, time for the juicy stuff! When you receive your box it should come in a box like this:

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Purple is my favorite color so I was oddly excited that my return bag was purple. Inside the box is a cute little letter, the purple return bag, and your clothes are wrapped in purple tissue paper. For my first box, I opted for two dresses. One is a denim dress and the other is a light almost washed out blue colored dress.

This is the denim dress:

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Here is the other dress:

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On the models both of these dresses seemed like great additions to my wardrobe. The reviews on the first dress were mixed so I decided it would be best to see for myself. I was not completely against the idea of liking it because I’ve been wanting a dress like it for a while now. The second dress had virtually no good reviews. Most of the reviews I read either centered on the fact that the corset-belt was not tight enough around the waist of the dress or they felt that the dress made them look shapeless. I held fairly high hopes for the first dress and just sent up a prayer for the second one.

Item #1- Plenty dress by Tracy Reese

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Pros:
The dress itself is well made and the color is identical to the picture on the website. I also feel that if you have a fuller bosom, this dress would compliment it well and emphasize the cleavage. If you have a little more to love around the midsection, do not be afraid of this dress. It is fairly roomy in the stomach area so it will probably hug your belly without making it the focal point of your outfit.

Cons:

As you can see, this dress fit me nothing like it did the model. This dress was the one I was most excited for but did not end up liking. At first I thought maybe I had ordered a size too big but some areas were a little snug while others were loose. If I had gone down a size, I’m sure that it would be too tight. Sizing aside, the fit itself is a bit problematic. I believe that part of it has to do with my shape. The bottom half of the dress fit fairly well but the top half of the dress swallowed me. Despite my wide hips, my waist is somewhat small in comparison. This means that even though the dress was able to accommodate my hips, it was not made to fit a waist that is not as wide as the hips themselves. Some people disliked the split so I’ll mention. I personally didn’t find this to be very problematic.

Item #2- Front Tie Corset Tiered Sleeve Blue Dress2018-05-29_168445476072098829466.jpg20180518_1912363083752941633098900.jpg

Pros:

If you can’t tell by my poses, I was getting my life in this dress! It gave me a medieval feel mixed with a little bit of flower child. Although some people felt that this dressed swallowed them up, I felt that it fit my body just right. There are three types of dresses that I love: flowy, body-con, and maxi. This dress had all the frills and flow I could want. It didn’t feel baggy on me or heavy. The material was nice and surprisingly had very little wrinkles on it. The dress had a very feminine feel to it and made me feel girly (contrary to popular belief, I am definitely a tomboy). If you have larger breast and don’t feel the need to emphasize your rear-end this dress leaves a good deal of room up top. I feel that one of the biggest pros is that this dress is diverse. It can fit in a lot of different style categories.

Cons:

The belted part does not tighten so if you are looking for a more cinched look, this dress is not the one for you. The color of the dress is also a little darker than the one the model is wearing.

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Final Verdict:

I definitely feel that it is worth trying the 30 day trial. Getting the subscription itself is still to be determined. The biggest factor turning me away from investing in this service is the price range. While the items you receive are of great quality, the pricing is not feasible if you are on a tight budget. I also feel that the selection of items is fairly limited in terms of diversity. Most of the clothes I’ve seen appear to be for women who wear a lot of busness attire.

I do like that they apply sizing suggestions for all the clothes you look at based on the size you entered. It is also convenient to be able to see what it is that will be sent to in your next box. Having more input in what is sent to you is definitely a plus. Another upside to this service is that you can recycle the same clothes back. You can also keep the clothes for as long as you want. They even dry clean the clothes you send back you don’t have to worry about washing them yourselves. Shipping is also free so you don’t have to worry your pretty little head over that!

I will be sending back both dresses soon, so I will be sure to update you guys on the next set of clothes I receive. If you decide to try this service for yourself let me know in the comments. If there are any other services you want me to try just shoot me a comment with the name of the company. Hopefully you enjoyed this post and it was informative. I appreciate you taking the time to read my blog. Don’t forget to please like, comment, share, and follow me for more content! Tell your friends, family, coworkers, or a random stranger (I’m not picky) to check out my blog as well!

 

 

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Love You Without Hating Them

This post is inspired by a comment I saw recently on Instagram. Someone commented “this is what real women look like” on a post of a plus size blogger. Now I realize this was meant to be a compliment and it was meant as a way to uplift. I did not misunderstand the intent but still felt unsettled by it. Phrases like “real women” and “real bodies” are terms that have never really sat right with me because they are usually made in reference to plus size women or women who have a little more to love around the midsection.

As many of you know, I am a body positivity activist. I want people to love their bodies: period. While I do advocate for plus size people, that is mostly as a result of the fact that I am plus size myself. I recognize the need for people like me to see themselves represented in a positive way so that they can learn to feel the same about themselves. That does not mean that this desire extends ONLY to plus sized people.

There are many people who do not have positive body images of themselves. This problem is relevant to many people and is an issue that I recognize is not only relevant to one type of person. So when I hear or read things that emphasize any one body type as being “real” it makes me uncomfortable. It allows for a line to be drawn in the sand that helps no one but could potentially harm a lot of people. The image below is an example that shows just how diverse beauty can be. Which of them represents real beauty? Trick question. They all do. Every woman in this picture is a real woman that represents a real body that other women can identify with and see themselves in.

The body positivity movement was largely born as a result of a need for acceptance: self-acceptance and making society see that it needs to accept more body types as being beautiful. People who don’t fit society’s static idea of beauty wanted to see a shift in the narrative of what can and should be considered beautiful. The problem is, in an effort to fight for that acceptance, we isolate other people who fit into the traditional idea of beauty.

You’ve seen it before: skinny girl fat shames plus sized girl and/or plus sized girl shames skinny girl for being skinny. The fixation society has with pitting women against each other is sad. You see it all the time with movies. The skinny girl is made to be the bully and the fluffier girl is written as a character who is bullied. It’s no wonder that real life imitates this very toxic relationship. The difference is, now the bullying is being done by both parties and hiding behind a mask of positivity.

This leads me back to my original point about “real women” and “real bodies”. Who defines what real is? What makes me with all of my fluff, a more realistic version of what women look like? The very idea of what real women look like is flawed because we are all different. Not only that, but it rests more on the idea that women who don’t fit traditional ideas of beauty are flawed and therefore more authentic. It embraces the idea that a real woman is not the model you see on runways or on the cover of magazines. It excludes these women without considering their feelings and own issues with body image. It adds to the narrative instead of creating a new one.

I have a best friend who is skinny but eats like a horse. That is no exaggeration. She can eat me under the table any day and it’s largely because of genetics. Her metabolism is extremely fast so even if she slacks off from the gym for a couple of months, she’d be hard pressed to even gain a pound. By all accounts she checks off the list of all the things that make up a traditional beauty: thin but curvy, short but can photograph tall, gorgeous skin, and lovely hair. Still, as beautiful as she is, she struggles with body image. To others the very idea of someone like her not oozing self-confidence comes as a huge surprise, but it’s not uncommon for most women to struggle with body image.

Being plus sized does not mean we are the only ones who struggle to find the beauty in ourselves. Our struggle does not give us the right to insult other women or put them down in order to build ourselves up. A real woman is everyone woman. A real body is everybody. Our journey to self-love cannot be taken by putting down other people to do it. Body-shaming doesn’t just happen to women who are plus sized, it can also happen in the reverse. Placing your insecurities on others is unfair and whatever confidence is built as a result will be based on an extremely faulty foundation. All women are beautiful.

What we should strive for is inclusiveness not separation. I want to expand the idea of what is beautiful by helping others see their beautiful. You read that right. Their beautiful. Your beautiful. Own it and flaunt your beautiful. There is no one type of beauty, no “real beauty” or “real body”, but a beauty that is uniquely your own.

It’s possible to love yourself and not put down others in the process.

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Spring Haul!! (Unboxing Part 1)

So we’ve all seen those clothing delivery services right? Some of them seem a little sketchy (I won’t name any names) but there are some that seem like it might be worth trying. The particular service that I decided to try is Dia & Co. One of the things that stood out about them is that I haven’t seen many bad reviews about them and they looked legitimate. I just recently decided to try the 30-day free trial from Gwynnie Bee so my next unboxing post will be about them, look forward to it!

One thing to note is that the styles from both of these companies seem to be somewhat similar. Just from browsing the styles they seem to be catered towards women who like workplace business chic. The biggest difference in style is that Dia & Co. is a little more business casual. Another difference between Dia & Co. and Gwynnie Bee is that there is a stylist that chooses items to send to you when you choose to use Dia & Co. With Gwynnie Bee you can choose items and add them to your closet. You choose which items have highest priority so if you see something you want more than something else, set that as your highest priority. Gwynnie Bee is also more expensive which is why I opted to try the 30-day free trial because I’m, you know, cheap.

So here’s the rundown on Dia & Co.

You pay $20 for each box and get 5 days to try on the items. Each box contains 5 items. What they send varies, but you can make suggestions about what you need or what you are looking for. For example, if you need more jeans you can send a note to your stylist and they’ll send you a box that will typically have a couple pairs of jeans per you request. You can also request for boxes to come sooner once you send back what you didn’t want and purchase what you want to keep. They will send boxes based on how often you want them and the returning process is really easy. One thing I love is the option to review the items in your boxes. You get the chance to tell them if you didn’t like the style, if it didn’t fit right, and etc.

This is what the box looks like (Cute right?):

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Inside the box you get a letter from your stylist, a paper with a list of the items you received and their prices, and a bag that you can return your items in. The return label is already attached to the bag which makes returns really easy. You can either drop it off at your local post office or ask you mailman/woman to take it with them. Returning your items is free so don’t stress over spending extra money on shipping.

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Item #1: First up we have the Tatum shoulder top. ($69) by Marybelle

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Pros: The style of this top is right up my alley. Ruffles and off the shoulder are a trend I love love love! The fit of this top is nice and the quality of the material is good. It is also flowy and anything flowy is a plus for me.

Con: Unfortunately, the design/pattern isn’t me. While I do like the colors, something about the pattern doesn’t flatter me the way I want it to. I look for a pattern to pop on me and this just wasn’t giving me what I wanted. For that reason alone, I cannot justify spending $69 on this top.

Item 2#: Second is the Chloe Off the Shoulder Ruffle Blouse ($59) by East Adeline

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Pros: This is yet another top that fits me the way I like. The color of this top is nice and compliments my skin.

Cons: Again, the pattern is not something I’m crazy about. Part of me feels that if this was a maxi dress I would be singing a different song, but as a shirt I am not sold on this top. It pops on me a little more than the other top but it’s still sort of a ‘meh’ reaction.

Item #3: Next up is the Kara Frayed Hem Jean ($79) by Slink Jeans

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Pros: I reeeeaaallly wanted to like these jeans. The way they look and are made is exactly my style.

Cons: The biggest con of all is how disappointed I was that I could not fit these jeans! I got them up to hips and had to stop because they were not agreeing with my rear-end. Besides the fact that I really wanted to love these jeans, they are freakin SLINK jeans. I had heard and read about how well they hug a fluffy girls curves and of course they didn’t get the chance to hug mine.

Sidenote: Dia & Co. does offer unlimited exchanges, so if it didn’t fit you can exchange it for another size.

Item #4: We also have the Sophia Straight Leg Pant ($82) by Lysse

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Pros: These pants are everything! I was skeptical at first but once I got through the traditional jeans dance (a lot of wiggling) they fit like a dream. They made my calves look great, hugged my curves, and had my backside poppin. Best of all is how they were long enough to cover my ankles. As a juicy woman with the height of an Amazon, it is not an easy task to find jeans or pants that don’t turn into capris. Normally I wouldn’t dream of spending that much money on jeans but remember, it’s important to invest in yourself. EVERYONE deserves a few pairs of pants/jeans that fit them just right. Needless to say, these pants are sold.

Cons: N/A

Item #5: Last but not least is the Minnesota Cold Shoulder Dress ($75) by London Times

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Pros: The color of this dress is one of the biggest things that stand out to me. My picture does not do the color of this dress justice. It is very well made and stands out in all the right ways. It is just right for a spring dress that can transition to a summer dress. It fits is a way that is not too tight or too loose which makes it perfect for an ordinary day out of a trip to the beach. Just throw on your sandals, shades, and sunhat then you’re on your way.

Cons: This dress fit me well but I am not sure how diverse the fit is for different body types. I would love to see this on someone more apple-shaped or triangle-shaped.

Final Verdict:

Is it worth it? That is the real question and to be completely honest, the jury is still out. Fair warning, the first box will probably make you feel iffy about continuing this service. Even after taking the style quiz, your stylist needs to get a feel for what you like and don’t like. Fortunately, each time I’ve gotten a new box the items have gotten better so don’t count them out just yet.

One thing I have to give them credit for is that all of the clothes I have received have been of great quality. Part of that may be because of the price-range for most of the clothing they send. If you are a diva on a budget I would say this service is not for you. It is worth it if you have the money to afford it but if not, you would be better off going to the store yourself or ordering online. You don’t have to buy anything but each box is a $20 styling fee.

The thing I liked most was that I was finally able to find jeans that fit me. As trivial as that sounds, it was a moment that almost made me tear up a little. Big and tall tends to cater to men and not to women so not having to roll up jeans and wear them as cuffed Capri pants was a wonderful feeling. It is also nice to be able to have clothes that are meant to hug my extra fluff and not hide it.

For now, I will wait until I order my next box to make a final decision. As of right now on a scale of 1 to 10, I would rate Dia & Co. at a 7. That score is mostly as a result of customer service, the quality of the clothing, and the speed of service. Make sure to be on the lookout for my next post about Dia & Co. Also, don’t forget to check out my other posts and like, share, and follow for more content!