Today I was checking one of my favorite blogs – mamavision.com (an awesome no-bullshit body image/media site run by an ex-model) – when I saw this post: Meet Sophie Watson. Quite a lovely, 14 year old girl isn’t she? (She would be lovelier without those freckles though, don’t ya think? But at least her tattooed eyeliner, eyebrows and lip liner makes her otherwise shallow features stand out).
“I am happy. I just look a lot better, Sophie says. “I like it now that it is always there and I don’t need to bother with it every morning.”
Her mother, a demented beauty therapist (that’s a new one), said she gave permission for the make-up treatment, according to BBC News.
“I think she is old enough to be making these decisions with support from me. It wasn’t something we looked into lightly. When you say she has had her make-up tattooed on it sounds really shocking. But actually it is done very subtly,” she said. “It’s done to enhance her features, it’s not done to change her, to make her look like somebody else. It’s not done to change the way she looks.”
Child charity the NSPCC criticised the move and said girls should not be treated as “sex objects”. The media is crying foul on this because “the danger is that a growing climate of sexualization encourages a view of girls as sex objects,” according to a spokeswoman for the Children’s Charity NSPCC said. Girls are being made to feel they should “enhance” themselves physically at younger, and younger ages. What’s next — breast implants before their breast even start growing??! Toddlers strutting around in high heels? “All children should be valued for their abilities and talent. They should be free to grow up as children. Sadly, we have reached a point where many children get distressed because they think they don’t look good. For some vulnerable children, this can even lead to mental health problems.” Ya think?! If you have a mother, like this obviously deranged one, avoid her advice at all costs. SHE is the one with low self esteem, and she is trying to make up for it through you. Don’t allow your mother’s issues become YOUR issues –whether is about weight, looks, height, style, whatever. A healthy, loving mom should encourage you to dress how you want to dress, explore what you want to explore, and talk to you point blank about societies sick obsession with beauty. Post at Mamavision * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * This just makes me want to scream. There are so many things wrong with this picture. The girl is FOURTEEN! To say she is already so unhappy with herself that she would get her makeup tattood on, it seems she’s setting herself up for many more years of unhappiness – with the help of her mother! Her mother is feeding her these ideas on a silver platter. From the article on BBC News, here’s some more info: Sophie Watson competes in beauty pageants, which is one of the factors that the girl and mother took into consideration when deciding to do the cosmetic tattoos. Although needles and an anesthetic are used, it is classed as a cosmetic procedure and is not permanent because it fades after between two and five years (thank goodness – she might not have permanently ruined her face!). It is illegal for an artist to tattoo anyone under the age of 18 – but the make-up procedure is not technically classed as a tattoo. However, Sophie does have two illegal tattoos – her name written on her wrist and flowers emblazoned on her stomach. She had them done without telling her mother and no-one has been prosecuted because she will not reveal the tattooist’s name. Sophie said she was also hoping to have her freckles lasered off in the future and was glad to have the make-up tattoos. This just speaks to the pressure that is put on girls (younger and younger) to look perfect – especially in the beauty pageant industry. It’s a shame that Sophie doesn’t have a mother that enforces positive messages. I was lucky – I cannot remember one bad thing my mother ever said about me or any of my siblings. One very good piece of advice that I have never forgotten came from my mother. It was when I was probably 14/15 and I was playing with makeup. My mother said to me, “Why don’t you focus on the inside a little more?” A year or two later, I stopped wearing makeup completely. It’s sad, but I see negative parental messages pretty often. I have a bunch of friends that, from an early age, have been receiving negative messages from their family members and those close to them. Some of them have mothers that tell them that they’re fat and need to diet, some of them flat out tell them that they’re ugly. Some have toxic friends that make them feel bad about themselves. What it really comes down to, is that the people delivering these messages are the ones with the real issues. Like Mamavision says – it is the mother in Sophie’s situation that is projecting her insecurities onto her daughter, who probably has her own awkward teenage insecurities to deal with as well. She’s not looking out for her child’s welfare at all. This is completely cosmetic, shallow and narcissistic. And Sophie wants to go further to get her freckles lasered off!?!?! I hope that someone intervenes or that Sophie gets a reality check. When I read stuff like this, it can feel like a huge setback. But, we can always counter it. You never know when someone’s having a bad day or just received a nasty remark that could change their perception of themselves. Be kind and give compliments freely. If you know someone who is young, be careful with your words – they are so impressionable. More importantly – if you are a parent, please keep your negative feelings about yourself, to yourself – your daughter (or son) is listening and learning.