Earlier this week, popular Youtuber Zoella was reported by Mail Online and the Sun for debuting a new 'risqué' side after posting a 'VERY revealing selfie' - and what kind of picture must have gathered that kind of attention? Was she all decked out in Agent Provocateur? Had she now embarked on a lingerie modelling career? Nope, just for chilling in her Calvins and wearing a long sleeve shirt as she posted a snap on snapchat before going on bed.
As the Sun enthusiastically reported Zoella 'cast off her squeaky clean image to pose in her knickers.' and was 'ditching her wholesome image' whilst the Mail Online questioned whether she was 'trying to widen her fanbase?'
When I discovered the "#westandwithZoe" hashtag trending on Twitter, I was puzzled (firstly because I read it as 'West And with Zoe" and thought maybe the internet didn't know how to spell 'end' that day) and then confused what the big deal was and saw others rally together also confused. How does a 25-year-old posting a photo of them in a plain shirt and underwear suddenly make them scandalous? Especially when they're wearing more than some female track athletes and practically the same clothing as a female surfer.
The objectifying, perverted description written by the Sun of the beauty vlogger's innocent goodnight selfie was "the 25-year-old flashed her toned midriff, going braless in a tight white top.". Personally, I've seen toddlers and children wear less than this and no one says anything, why? Because it is wrong to sexualise a child's body unjustifiably when it is of innocent nature - so why is it acceptable in general when a girl starts to encounter womanhood? People say that it is up to women to not present a certain message to prevent people from sexualising them but have little to say of why is it okay in today's culture to have the right to sexualise and objectify a woman irregardless and simply based on your own construct.
And this isn't the first time, ever notice how as soon as a young female celebrity reaches the cusp of adulthood at 18 years old, the objectifying, sexualising nature of articles written about them in tabloids increases? From simply relaxing on the beach on holiday to being commented on how they 'left little to the imagination' whilst wearing their everyday clothes.
It presents a lack of respect towards women and maybe the tabloids are unaware of this, but it also creates another barrier that women face in order to be taken seriously when to the whole world you're now predominantly objectified. It teaches women that your body is not yours, you don't have the right to feel free and uninhibited in your own anatomy as a human being because everything is somehow sexual, you will constantly be subjected to sexualisation and objectification and oh well, you have to be okay with that and go out of your way to make sure you aren't 'sending out the wrong message' - even if you are a grown woman, just chilling in your nighties at home taking a selfie.
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