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Me too, Trainor!

Meghan Trainor is all about that bass.

So it’s no surprise that the release of her new music video, “Me Too” was quickly removed in lieu of a video retouching job that was not approved by the Grammy Award winner. Her waist was significantly smaller as she swayed from side to side in a blue ensemble belting out lyrics about self love.

“I took down the YouTube video because they photoshopped the crap out of me, and I’m so sick of it,” Trainor said, adding that she ”had a bomb waist” on her Snapchat. She was not aware of the final cut and thus, an embarrassing Photoshop scandal ensued.

Trainor’s decision to remove the video was not surprising. The singer has made a name for herself after her 2014 breakout single, “All About That Bass,” became a self-confidence anthem that celebrates bodies that are larger than the typical media norm.

The real #metoo video is finally up! Missed that bass. Thank you everyone for the support 💙

A photo posted by Meghan Trainor (@meghan_trainor) on

This is not to say her actions were met without criticisms. A number of speculations have been making the rounds on social media as to why the video was truly taken down. It is being labelled as a publicity stunt by some and a guilty reaction by others. Questions are arising as to how Trainor could have not seen the final cut, as the star of her own video. When fans began to notice the evident ‘fixes,’ the video was awkwardly pulled down from the internet.

The problem is that there will always be controversy behind issues relating to body image and marketing. People don’t think its necessary to advocate for for positive body image in this day and age. It’s not like women have battled to feel comfortable in their own skin before or anything. Of course there’s a hidden agenda.

FYI, there isn’t.

The question is not whether or not Trainor noticed that her waist was synced in. Google Trainor and a suggestion pops up asking ‘Meghan Trainor size.’ There’s an obvious interest in this woman’s body. So it’s possible she may have taken it down due to embarrassment or she may have taken it down for a larger view count.

We’ve all deleted Instagram posts upon realizing it was posted at a time where you won’t get more than 10 likes. In a time where Airbush apps and photo editing tools are our best friends, it’s easy to get wrapped up in trying to meet the norms of society. The guilt that comes with zapping away a pimple in a pretty picture soon diminishes as the likes increase and heart emojis appear in the comment section below.

The issue we need to focus on here is that of body image and why the production studio even thought of photoshopping a music video with a message about body image. That conversation has lost itself in the midst of Trainor’s intentions, which we’ll never really know. Let’s not preoccupy ourselves. What we do know is that the conversation about body image and the media is a real issue that we need to tackle.

What are your thoughts on Trainor’s decision to pull down the video? Let us know in the comments below.

When I get that feeling, I want self-love healing

Try mentioning masturbation at a dinner party and watch as silence sweeps the room, facial expressions turn to shock and eyes will lower in shame. The word itself evokes a discomfort in most people that is not often seen in other sexualized topics of discussion.

It is time for the taboo surrounding female masturbation to be chucked into the trash, joining 1950’s Chatelaine ads advocating for traditional marriage and anti-abortion. Women have fought for sexual liberation since the 1960’s and 70’s — now let’s celebrate and talk about the importance of self-love.

Though squeezing the peach or stroking the sailor is mostly seen as a recreational activity, done under the covers late at night, research shows that masturbation has positive physical and psychological health effects for women. It is also a great way to get in touch with yourself … by touching yourself.

According to a study on vaginal massage released by the Research Clinic for Holistic Medicine in Copenhagen, Denmark, “Existential healing is not a local healing of any tissue, but a healing of the wholeness of the person, making him much more resourceful, loving, and aware of himself, his own needs, and wishes”.

Vaginal massage addresses not only physical problems, but it also allows the individual to understand how their sexual organs are affected by emotions and physical health. This, in turn, promotes further understanding of what a person needs in order to be satisfied with their health and their sex lives.

Vaginal massage and acupuncture also helps with incontinence and urinary tract problems. “These techniques often used for healing chronic pains in the pelvis or genitals, and treating the highly inconvenient pattern of frequent reinfection of the urinary system,” the Research Clinic for Holistic Medicine found.

In addition, masturbation can lead to some pretty earth shattering orgasms with practice. Orgasms resulting from masturbation aren’t just pleasurable, but they also secret higher levels of oxytocin. Oxytocin regulates prolactin, a stress hormone which has been shown to cause breast cancer and brain tumours. It is also a natural antibiotic and helps to fight nasty bacteria. So, next time someone asks what you are doing with your hands “down there”, why not tell them you are fighting cancer.

“Masturbation is a great way to explore your body for its own sake, have an enjoyable and pleasurable time, and learn what parts of your body are most responsive,” said Isabel Carlin from the University of Toronto Sexual Education Centre. “It’s also a great way to get to know your body and feel more comfortable with it for future sexual situations with other people.”

Having the ability to get yourself off whenever you please can be empowering and beautiful. Unfortunately there are many stigmas around masturbation that prevent women from exploring the exciting world down below.

“Stigma around masturbation can definitely make people feel stressed and anxious when they do masturbate (or even get the urge to do so), which can stop people from masturbating entirely,” said Carlin.

Reducing stigma and empowering people to embrace their own sexuality is a primary step towards sexual healing. For women with poor self-esteem or who have been sexualized in their past, masturbation is the last thing they want to do, despite it’s  positive effects.

“When a woman begins to view herself as an object, the mental resources that are required to constantly monitor her appearance can disrupt her thought processes, thus disconnecting her from her natural internal cues,” writes Mels Van Driel, urologist and sexologist, in his book With the Hand: A Cultural History of Masturbation. “Body satisfaction can also influence a woman’s ability to orgasm, her willingness to explore novel sexual activities, and allow her to feel more comfort in providing sexual pleasure for herself”.

Many people shy away from their genitalia, thinking that self-love is a bit gross, disturbing, and inappropriate. But, it’s not. There is nothing wrong with hunkering down, grabbing some candles and mood music, locking your door, and beginning the process of understanding the inner-workings of your magic spot. Trust me, you won’t regret it.

When in doubt, remember the great words of Woody Allen, “I won’t hear a bad word about masturbation. It’s sex with someone I love.” Self-love is an important asset to understanding and loving your body. This Valentine’s day, take advantage, and enjoy one of the most satisfying ways to stay healthy and happy.

Muffin Top: A Love Story (2014)

What problems can a rich, blonde university professor residing in Malibu possibly have in her life? A lot, as Suzanne Nicholson depicted in this romantic comedy, directed by and starring; Cathryn Michon. She plays a Women’s Studies Pop Culture professor whose marriage falls apart after she fails to conceive a child. With hormone pills adding to her insecurities and body image issues, Suzanne embarks on a journey to find herself again, through thick and thin. (Literally)

The purpose behind the film was clear. A female empowering story with a reminder of ”loving yourself.” Every feminists dream, isn’t it? As Suzanne demonstrated the stress of having a muffin top, a failed marriage, and a renewed sex life, many emotions come to mind. First of all, there’s nothing like the unstable feeling of your guts overflowing out of your jeans. Wearing spanx and temporary breasts implants may seem sexy on the outside, but can cause for some embarrassing moments during late night romancing. The story will hit close to home for most women, however, it does prove to be lengthy. From a complicated love triangle to not-so-subtle messages about feminism, its a lot of information to take in under 2 hours.

The characters lacked depth. It was difficult to feel anything, despite the Michon’s attempt of getting us to ”love ourselves.” Suzanne’s husband, who so wrongly left her for a thinner, conceivable woman, was in the film for a total of 10 minutes, leaving no chance for audiences to gather the same hatred and loathing that was seen by Suzanne herself. Her various flings that took place after her split were awkward and lacked the chemistry required to effectively demonstrate her ‘sexual re-awakening.’

As for Suzzanne herself? Ugh. Girl, can she whine! Whether she’s digging in her bags for M&M’s, telling her BFF about her latest life problems, or sulking about a husband who isn’t worth the time, Suzanne was the stereotypical female that all feminists are striving to break away from. And for a female empowering film, having a more likable protagonist would have definitely sent a more transparent message. She went on to solve her problems with the help of liposuction and botox, which to the average audience – just makes her more unlikable.

Yes, it did create an interesting twist as to what feminism means to each and every individual. But it also glorified the concept of white feminism. You will notice, there are no significant characters involving women of colour in this film. It’s about problems white, rich people face and the solutions they bring from a white, rich people perspective. And with the scrutiny that white feminism is currently facing in society – this is definitely not a film that will advance the feminist movement.

Verdict: Catch Muffin Top: A Love Story on Netflix to educate yourself on the controversial subject of white feminism- just don’t expect to be moved. Great flick to have on while you’re completing that knitting project for fall, though.

4/10

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