Six weeks ago a friend and I were walking down the main high street in Birmingham, when we were stopped by someone who was promoting a new photography studio that had just opened in the city. After a conversation, we came to a deal that involved a makeover and photography day for us both, complete with champagne and various treatments at an enormous discount. Since then, we’ve had the date firmly booked into our calendars and we’ve been looking forward to it.
Until today, that is.
The shoot is tomorrow. It is rare that I will discuss issues of body confidence unless it focuses on the positive, but today I had to choose a series of outfits to take with me, and the whole process left me feeling totally deflated.
I’m not fashionable or fashion conscious, and never have been. I prefer to spend my time in sweaters and tracksuits bottoms in my spare time, my hair is scraped back on the top of my head and the last time I put any effort into applying make up was in March for my friend’s birthday. My reflection in the mirror today was quite a sorry state – my hair hasn’t been cut for about two years, I have never had a manicure and my eyebrows are beginning to take over my face.
On an average day, this doesn’t necessarily bother me – I have a busy and often stressful life and have better things to worry about than whether my nails are painted. I tell myself that I’m an average woman and I am comfortable with that. However, the process of getting ready today reminded me of how many beautiful clothes I can no longer fit into – my favourite dresses won’t go past my thighs, jackets won’t fit on my arms, and once baggy tops are now tight, revealing the gut that has steadily appeared over the last five years.
It has served as a reminder of just how much I have let myself go. Having to stand in fromt of a camera tomorrow (even when there is champagne involved) is one of the most daunting things I have experienced in a while. It has made me realise that I’m accepting average, and I deserve far more than that.
What about you – do you like what you see in your reflection? Are you open about body confidence issues with your loved ones?
Want to find out what happened? Click the image below to see the results!