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What Real Women Wear is Real Nonsense?

Updated on November 19, 2012

Will the REAL WOMEN please stand up?

This is my story of a real woman and one very biased store. Every work day I would pass by a certain store which had large letters permanently displayed over its cash register stating WHAT REAL WOMEN WEAR. I would typically avoid looking and hurry to clock in early for work. One not-so-special day a new sign appeared before my eyes and directly in my walking path. I could not avoid seeing it unless I did not look where I was going (which would be really stupid of me). The sign proclaimed 'spend xx money and get xx in REAL WOMEN DOLLARs.'

Note: You may be wondering why I did not just enter the mall from a different entrance and avoid the store entirely. If I parked at a different entrance: 1) parking was almost never available at the second closest entrance 2) most employees parked around the same place which was nice after mall close when the parking lot was creepy and you did not want to walk alone 3) I would not let this shallow store dictate my life.

A week went by, then two, then three, and every time I worked I saw the REAL WOMEN DOLLAR sign. Maybe it was withdrawal from gluten, my coworker saying my GF bread was the equivalent of dried glue, seeing too many people rip out the largest size with no respect for my two hours of perfect board folding, or the store's perfume being so strong my brain was out of whack. Whatever the reason, I had to rectify the indecency of referring to this store as being what REAL WOMEN wear when my body and those women I work with do not fit the store's ideal size. According to the sign, we were not to be considered as REAL WOMEN.

I consider myself to have a real woman body (as should all women no matter how different we are). I am petite. I stand barely over five feet tall, have never weighed over one hundred pounds, and my feet are child size. To the surprise of many people, I am not a stick figure. My body has actual curves, which evidently comes from my father's side of the family, and led to the nickname of 'Barbie.' So there you have it, a description of my REAL WOMAN body.

My boyfriend was new to dating me and had yet to experience the independent side of me who stands up for just causes. (In college a male classmate was disrespecting the school cadaver in my Anatomy class. I gave him a lecture on how important admiration is for a 92 year old woman who gave her body to science and respect for the class in general. He later confided to my roommate the absolute terror he now feels for 'the girl who does not take anyone's sh**.') My boyfriend awkwardly followed me as I took a detour into the store and headed directly to an employee. "I need to see a manager." The lady looked at me like I was slightly deranged and confused. After all I did not fit in any of the clothing so what was a midget doing glaring up at her? "Um....I will go get her." I stood there with my head held high as the women shopping in the store pretended to not be glancing at me. My boyfriend looked like he was debating if he should physically remove me from the store, leave and wait for me outside, or stay to protect me from the employees. Before he could make a decision the manager appeared before me. "Yes?" I began to calmly explain (beginning by telling her it wasn't her fault because no one should get blamed for their company's ridiculousness) how the store's advertising was offensive and biased against many women including myself. I may not fit their clothes but does it mean I am not a REAL WOMAN? No. The female employees I work with do not fit their clothes. Are they not REAL WOMEN? No. By now the whole store was listening, my boyfriend was admiring the floor, and the manager seemed to be in a state of shock. I finished my tirade with an assurance of it not being her fault but I thought I should let her know and who could I contact in the company? She gave me dazed look and scribbled down the information for company headquarters with an awkward apology on my feelings over their advertising. I left the store pulling my boyfriend behind me amidst the customers no longer pretending not to stare. Relief flooded through me as I exited the mall. At least now I had said something instead of living the daily frustration of passing by a store which looked down upon us who don't fit their 'standards.' Four years later my boyfriend laughs when he recalls my embarrassing showdown to the ladies in the store. I laugh too but I still do not regret a word I said.

About the Picture: This is a picture taken of me around the time when the event happened. I put in this picture because my looks have changed a bit since then and I wanted you to see me as I looked back in 2007. And by the way, in the picture I am imitating the fountain in the background on a summer gallery night.

Wow! That Real Woman Smells Fabulous (but not overpowering)!

Aromatherapy Top 6 100% Pure Therapeutic Grade Basic Sampler Essential Oil Gift Basic sampler essential oil gift set 6/10ml (lavender, sweet orange, peppermint, lemongrass, tea tree, eucalyptus)
Aromatherapy Top 6 100% Pure Therapeutic Grade Basic Sampler Essential Oil Gift Basic sampler essential oil gift set 6/10ml (lavender, sweet orange, peppermint, lemongrass, tea tree, eucalyptus)

Essential oils are very different than perfumes. A perfume is generally 80% alcohol and 20% oil/other stuff. When you spray on perfume, it diffuses through the whole room but fades off you soon after. Essential oils are completely alcohol-free. The real essential oils are not "oily." They will mix completely with water (which can be used as a manly aftershave). I got mine in Egypt from a famous company who makes the scents for companies like Clinique and Chanel. I own Flower of the Sakkara (used for a perfume in Japan). I also own double jasmine which I use to help with minor headaches. I am a complete believer in essential oils so give them a try all you Real Woman!

 

Let's Get Up & Get Going!

Pilates Workout for Dummies
Pilates Workout for Dummies

Pilates works to promote strength in your body's core through a variety of exercises. Focusing on your breathing while doing exercises is a big reason why I like Pilates. After a long day, it is soothing and puts your whole body to rest. If you do not have a Pilates place to take lessons or an instructor, try Pilates for Dummies. The explanations are easy to follow and geared towards beginners unlike some programs which are meant for the more experienced. Side note: Do not start any exercise program without consulting your doctor.

 

Bring Out Your Real Woman Beautiful Skin!

AHAVA Dead Sea Purifying Mud Mask, 3.4 fl oz
AHAVA Dead Sea Purifying Mud Mask, 3.4 fl oz

I bought this Ahava mask while at the Dead Sea and have since discovered its magic. Using nutrient-rich mud from the Dead Sea, it tightens the skin and works to clear it. Put it on several times a week and you can always feel the difference.

 

This Real Woman's Comfort Food

Toblerone Swiss Dark Chocolate with Honey and Almond Nougat, 3.52-Ounce Bar (Pack of 12)
Toblerone Swiss Dark Chocolate with Honey and Almond Nougat, 3.52-Ounce Bar (Pack of 12)

At times, a Real Woman requires some Real comfort food. Mine happens to be the chocolate type and I especially love the Toblerone type. I prefer the dark chocolate complete with delicious honey and yummy nougat. Most people prefer the milk chocolate and for the rest of you, there is a white chocolate Toblerone. I'm getting hungry for one just writing about so I may have to do my Real Woman suggestion and get one (or two).

 

A Little Music Goes a Long Way - Nothing is better than a good lens and song.

This lens had a little techno, some 90s flair, a little Japanese and The Kooks with a side of sultry Darren Hayes for good measure.

Spotlight on Nook Color - I Will Tell You Why It's Beautiful!

I love the Beauty of Nook Color. Will You?

Barnes & Noble NOOK Color eBook Tablet
Barnes & Noble NOOK Color eBook Tablet

Nook Color is amazing. Why? For one, it's a library smaller than an average book. My books are organized into shelves ranging from Humor to Mystery. No matter where I travel, all I need is my little Nook Color. But the best part of Nook Color is it's in COLOR. This is why I wanted one. I can read nerdy science articles and see the images in color! When you want to distract children, you have free story books which are in COLOR, interact with them, even read to them, it is pretty much amazing. Have I mentioned it is also travel savvy? I thought about an ipad but they are so huge and bulky. Nook Color fits perfectly in my purse and weighs very little. O. And it is like a mini laptop, I use mine for the internet every day. I check my email, squidoo, etsy etc without having to turn on my laptop. Give Nook Color a try and find out why I love it so much!

 

What Makes You (or someone you know) A REAL WOMAN?

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    • SimonJay profile image

      SimonJay 3 years ago

      I understand why you done what you did but dont think something like that should bother you that much, yes its annoying that the ad could offend alot of women but its also just stupid marketing.

    • profile image

      RuralFloridaLiving 4 years ago

      I'm afraid I don't agree with you here. Sorry.

    • Kalafina profile image
      Author

      Kalafina 4 years ago

      @Kalafina: On a final note, why are we so hostile to those who are thin? Some people are just born that way. It makes me upset when someone who is naturally small is referred to as a "barbie" and looked down upon for what they are. Why do we shame those who are thin? Aren't all of us God's wonderful creation?

      You mention how obesity is a major problem (and it definitely is), so why not celebrate when someone is healthy and happy?

    • Kalafina profile image
      Author

      Kalafina 4 years ago

      @jennysue19: I believe the awareness on eating disorders and realistic sizes have helped a lot in changing this world's modern perception on beauty. I am not saying stores catering to large sizes are a bad thing. This lens is about appreciating who you are no matter what your size or shape. I was not upset about the size, it is the fact that it said this was for Real Women. Are all of us not Real Women? What gives a store the right to make such a claim?

    • jennysue19 profile image

      jennysue19 4 years ago

      I absolutely agree with Honeybeeme. I noticed when I was in the USA on holiday that the stores catered better for larger women than they do in the UK so count yourselves lucky there. Not saying it is all good because it partly reflects the US problem of severe obesity and over eating junk food. I have several pairs of jeans in my wardrobe with the same size label. They are anything BUT physically the same size because there is no legal control that says a size 16 has to measure up to any standard. That is one irritation. However the major one is the fact that despite the fact that the AVERAGE UK size is 16, there are far more size 10,12 and 14 clothes on the rails in most clothes shops and the media still flings the ideal of skeletal Victoria Beckham at us. I read a national newspaper this week which featured a whole page of spring fashions. Not one item showed the range of sizes it was available in. Some of our most famous designers have admitted they design for size 8-10 and that is what the models have to be. I've fought my weight all my adult life (I'm 61) because of a thyroid disorder that has been under-diagnosed and under-compensated. I'm also fighting the UK Royal College of Physicians on this one as are many people with my disorder. They removed the one medication that is most appropriate from general use. Now I also have arthritis which pretty well stops me exercising.

      Getting to the core of the problem though is that too many women BELIEVE the media hype and whatever size they actually are, the media makes them feel bad about themselves. Even 6 and 7 year olds are being treated for eating disorders because perfectly normal sized little girls are trying to aspire to an impossible shape aimed at adult women.

    • Kalafina profile image
      Author

      Kalafina 4 years ago

      @anonymous: I appreciate your comments and have not meant to offend. What I am saying is no matter the size or shape, what makes a real woman is simply being a woman and being yourself. There is no need to attach a word or phrase implying one is body is better than another. Yes. Our culture is skewed in its perception of beauty but that does not mean we also have to be.

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      This is one of my favorite stores I can see how someone small would be offended but this store is meant and marketed toward the plus sizes women who also have to see offensive ads of skinny more than half naked women.. Also posters in almost every single store showing clothes in slender bodies. The slogan "real women" was meant to help us fat chicks feel better about ourselves and know that we can dress cute too. I am a size 14-16 and I live that this store allows for curves in the cut if their clothes. Jean shopping used to be a nightmare as a size 16 was to small and an 18 way too big. This big boogie girl is thankful for LB and the only thing I would like to see them change is adding a few more smaller sizes. As zumba is leaning me more towards a size 12-14. I am almost sad to be out of a 14 bc I know even "curvy fit" win fit I other stores. I am supportive of the "real woman slogan" bc MOST women are not a size 2-4 as projected in our culture's marketing plan. Here's to All the real women no matter the size. This is one store we can comfortably shop in... Maybe h should move on to the Barbie stores.. Lord knows there are plenty of them.

    • katiecolette profile image

      katiecolette 4 years ago

      Staying true to myself :)

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Pilates!!!