On Being Sexy

Before we begin, a disclaimer. This article is about my own personal experience and I don’t pretend to be speaking for everyone, nor do I wish to undermine any other experience.

 

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When Eliza and I first came up with this collaborative idea, I didn't think that I would have such a hard time pinpointing what sexy meant to me. However, I did and I still don't think I know when is it that I feel the sexiest. That's why it is so difficult for me to come to terms with the notion that society seems to have a very clear idea of what sexy looks like. Even worse, it seems too chose when I look sexiest. So let's talk about it. To begin with, what does sexy even mean? I believe it's about being alluring, appealing and desired. Desired by whom you may ask? I don’t know darling, that’s for you to decide. For me, growing up at least, it was all about being desired by the opposite gender, and perhaps it was also about being envied by my counterparts. To be sexy in my Colombian bubble you had to look the part, being thin was a must and to complete the look you needed long luscious, preferably straight, hair. I was never either of those things, I often think of myself as a wiggly curve in a world where clean cut lines are the norm. Consequently, falling outside this standard, I wasn't brave enough to feel sexy. Sexy, in my mind, was reserved for another kind of girl. That is why it became rather confusing when that word, one that I felt didn't belong to me, became one of the first things that popped into peoples’ minds when describing my physique. This drastic change came about when I was fifteen or so, when the universe and my genetics decided that I was to become a teenager trapped in a woman’s body.

 

From that point on, my boobs became a defining part of my life. I know, I know, how dramatic, but we all have battles with our bodies, and this was just part of mine. They simply couldn't be ignored or hidden, not that they should because they are fab (me in the present), but I must admit that it is confusing and frustrating when unexpectedly your identity changes because of something you have no control over. I was looked at differently and suddenly I had this somewhat redeeming attribute that got me into the sexy girl club. Going into my early twenties (where I am at) it was time to define this word within my own parameters, forgetting the machismo bullshit with which I grew up. To me now, sexy is about the way I feel in this body and the way I carry myself, it's about that girl I see in the mirror and not the way others look at her.  I feel sexiest when I am confident, unapologetic and effortless, and this doesn't always happen when my boobs are out. When they are, I often feel exposed, like a nerve. I become vulnerable to the foreign gaze that, even if I don't want to, still affects me. My body is over-sexualised, and I think both the media and the fashion industry play a big part in this. Per both these industries it appears that my body type cannot be elegant, we are here to be bombshells, to be on Sports Illustrated and lingerie catalogs and never to set foot in a couture catwalk. My body in these industries feels borderline vulgar, and that frustrates me. The fact is that I have to think twice before going out in an outfit that other body types can “get away with”, because in me it may be “a bit much”. It’s 2019 and women’s bodies are still subjects to these ridiculous rules that measure how worthy of respect we are based on the shape of our bodies and how much of it we show. I personally am tired of my body being “too much”, and yet I can't help that feeling that sometimes it is.

 

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Consequently, my relationship with sexiness is defined by a lot of ambiguity. I can't say that I don't feel sexy in beautiful lingerie, perhaps a mesh top, because I do. But it's only uncomplicated in front of the mirror. When I look like that in public, difficult feelings arise since I like being seen but I hate being undressed by someone’s eyes. I try and carry myself with pride but there’s also that lingering taste of shame when I am looked at like I belong in a playboy catalog. That is why I choose to assert my sexiness in a more modest way, in a more “elegant” way. I like to demand attention without feeling that I am asking for it, and because of how my body is constructed, if I wear anything smaller than a tank top well, apparently, I am “desperate for attention and I should have a bit of more shame”. I think this is wrong and I know it's only someone else's opinion which is feed by the societal rules of our time, and it shouldn't bother me but it does. Nobody likes to be objectified. In the same way that Elle Woods (why did it take me so long to realise how good this film is? Thanks, Ariana Grande for making me re watch it) doesn't want to be seen only as another blond with big boobs, I don't want to be seen only as another Latina with big boobs. Thus, I try to fight as hard as I can against these perceptions even though sometimes I feel defeated and defined by them, but this is not about being the perfect warrior.

 

To bring this article to somewhat of a conclusion first I want to ask. Society darling can boobs just be boobs? Can we stop judging boob holders by how much or how little they have, and how they choose to dress them? Thanks, I'd be awesome if I can go out showing a bit of cleavage and not be harassed. Secondly, maybe we should stop trying to define sexiness in a universal way, sexy is personal, and sexy is fluid, sexy is in the eye of the beholder much like beauty, and the eyes that matter here are your own. Let us try and own our sexiness in whichever way we see fit, because we deserve to. So, I would like to invite you to share your journey with sexiness in the comment section, whether you are still figuring it out (like yours truly) or you are already there!  

 

Oh, and one las’t thing you all are super sexy, but only if and when you feel like it ;)

MP