Sunday, 10 April 2016

Ladies Day & Shaming Women

I have my own particular views regarding horse-racing (I think it’s cruel and unnecessary) however, that is for discussion on another day. Today I want to talk about the level of abuse in the media targeted at the women who have been attending Aintree this week.

As someone born and raised in Liverpool I feel somewhat protective of the women when I see an article trying to ‘shame’ them, enjoying every opportunity to show shots up skirts that are caught in the wind and any other unflattering angle they can find. They hire ‘experts’ to rate the looks of the women, who give the impression that anyone working class could not possibly understand the concept of style. They manage to simultaneously slag them off whilst objectifying them (which certain news outlets do to women in general…looking at you Daily Fail).

I’ve also noticed of late, that the good old soapbox of negativity Facebook is full of people making comments such as ‘big girls should cover up more’, ‘they look like they’ve been dragged through a charity shop’, ‘epidemic of big thighs on show’, ‘slags’, ‘tacky’…the list goes on. Sadly a lot of these comments are from other women, why are we being so bloody nasty to each other?! If you don’t like someone’s outfit, well that’s fine (we all have those thoughts) but why go out of your way to go online and write something nasty about someone you don’t even know? And body shaming is never ok.

Many of the women who attend put a huge amount of effort and money into their look for Ladies Day. They wax, tan, spend hours searching for the perfect outfit and get their nails, hair and make-up done. They put in an effort that I can only dream of and probably don’t even make in total across the entire year. If you go to Liverpool city centre any weekend, you can see that there is a culture of women taking huge pride in how they look and dress. Why is this something that we are expected to turn our noses up at?

The winner of 'best dressed' - Metro
There’s a term used in Liverpool, ‘Prin’ which is used to describe these girls. It is short for ‘princess’ and it’s not an insult, many of the girls use it themselves. To me, the term is basically saying ‘hell yes I’m as good as any princess and won’t accept treatment that doesn't make me feel like one’. There is nothing wrong with women enjoying themselves and wanting to look good. Why are we tearing these women down, instead of celebrating women enjoying themselves and expressing their style?

I understand that some of the dresses or looks are not everyone’s cup of tea. I personally don’t dress as glam as these women, and I’d look ridiculous in a fascinator, but that doesn’t mean that I don’t admire them. In the past I may have eye-rolled at the effort put in (I can be a bitch as much as the next person) but that was wrong of me, and I shouldn’t have been so judgemental. While the media takes its opportunity to tear women down, I think that we need to be lifting other women up. Let’s appreciate each other’s individual tastes and style and congratulate each other if we want to look our best.