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A lot of people judge me; they think I’m pretty fucking weird. When I go on a photo shoot, the other industry models don’t know what to make of me. They’re usually like, ‘What the fuck is this?’ It’s difficult for me in the fashion world; people think I’m a gimmick and that I’m just being exploited for my differences. My interaction with people is stressful. We’re all mirrors to each other, and I think a lot of people tend to project their bullshit on me. I have to remember that when someone does judge me in a certain way, it’s just a reflection of their own issues. It just sucks that I have to be the one that receives it…. 
Read more at http://stylelikeu.com/themes-2/body-image/melanie-gaydos/#z0RfLqqGqQGpDHi7.99

Melanie Gaydos for StyleLikeU (TW for brief discussions of suicide and abuse)

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I Am What’s Underneath - True Style Is Self Acceptance

“With each layer of clothing removed, new truths came to the surface.

What began to come out of our interviews was powerful vulnerability and honest personal storytelling that revealed the depths of marketing’s effects on our human experience. 

Out poured story after story about poor self-image: eating disorders, pill addictions, depression, as well as gender, age and racial identity crises. In addition, many had faced misguided assumptions towards them based on looks – bullying and marginalization for everything from what they were wearing to the texture of their natural hair. How absurd is that?

What we began to realize was that each person, like us, had felt that they were lacking something that kept them from feeling beautiful and whole.”

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The What’s Underneath Project: Juliana Huxtable

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!!!!!!

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Rog & Bee…such a beautiful love story

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A Violent Past, An Empowering Now: Urban Bush Babe’s Cipriana Quann (via StyleLikeU)

We asked Urban Bush Babes founder, Cipriana Quann, to be a part of the What’s Underneath Project because her courage is as audacious as her beautiful crown of hair, which we have been coveting since we first met her a couple of years ago. “For me, suffering means strength,” she said, and, for today’s episode in partnership with Chantelle Lingerie, she bravely reveals for the first time her struggles about how she and her sister grew up with a mentally ill, physically abusive father who stayed at home while their mother worked. Cipriana has used the 14 years of her dad’s violence and manipulation as fuel for self-empowerment and self-acceptance. She dropped out of the conventional modeling world that told her that she had to change her hair to get work and launched her very successful blog that has disrupted the status quo. “I decided a long time ago that I wasn’t going to let my past decide who I was,” Cipriana declares. “I don’t want to carry anger. After years, I feel peaceful, I feel at home, and I feel like me.”

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We get real in our latest interview with StyleLikeU. Style + Culture. The revolution will be televised. 

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Call her ‘dark,’ call her 'skinny,’ call her 'beautiful.’ Just don’t ever call her 'Iman.’

Mari Malek went from terrifying violence in Sudan, to the hostile life of a refugee in Egypt, to freedom in America. But moving to New Jersey was far from the end of her problems — racism was just as bad there as it had been in Egypt. She was teased and harassed for being black and for being dark.

By the time she turned 16, though, modeling agencies had decided she had what it takes to become a fashion model. That’s when she went from thinking about bleaching her skin to thinking of her body as a temple.

But even the agencies tried to pigeonhole her, thinking she could fit into the successful look they created with Alek Wek, another Sudanese model. Instead, she started her own agency. After a life like Mari’s, it’s no surprise that she wasn’t content merely strutting around in clothes or squeezing into somebody else’s ideas about her. 

“We are conditioned to be fearful.” But to that, she says, “Fuck fear.”