Can you really be a feminist and love fillers?

The word feminist is being thrown about so much in recent months. From debates on equal pay to Trump and Brexit, it seems everyone is standing up to be counted as a feminist. But in a world that’s obsessed with looking good and often looking youthful, can you maintain your feminist standpoint if you choose to partake in injectable treatments like fillers and Botox? I really wanted to take part in this debate, not least because I myself chose to have a treatment done recently, but also because I think this is such a relevant discussion to be having right now.

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Allergan who are the makers of Botox and JUVÉDERM® facial fillers were interested in women’s thoughts on this and commissioned research among over 1,500 women. The results were really interesting.

  • 88% of women agreed you should be free to express your beauty any way you choose
  • 25% of women say they’ve had or would consider facial injectable’s – and of those women, 38% say they have/would keep it a secret

However shockingly over half of the women surveyed believed you couldn’t be a feminist and love fillers.  So, can you call yourself a feminist and still agree and even partake in injectable treatments? These very issues and more were discussed at a recent event hosted by Cosmetic Executive Women and Allergan, where the panel discussed the perception of ageing and the changing attitudes to aesthetic procedures. The key comment for me was;

 “What I find profoundly uncomfortable is attacking a woman who decides to have treatment, on the grounds that it is anti-feminist. Surely, a definition of feminism includes feeling empowered to age the way you want too, without criticism or judgment.”

This pretty much nails my opinion right on the head. I wouldn’t regard myself as a strong feminist I certainly don’t get hotly involved in debates or speak out a lot about feminist issues, but it’s my understanding and belief that feminism works towards women having the power and the choice to make proactive decisions about their own life without gender being an issue.  If I choose to make a decision to have a non-invasive treatment done to improve the way I look and hopefully the way I look at myself, why does this make me any less a feminist? I’m not making the choice to look better for my man or to be viewed more desirable by men I’m doing it for myself.  I was proud that I made a proactive decision to take the plunge and proud that thanks to positive hard work as my own boss I’m in a position to have it done.

There were also comments at the panel about disclosing whether treatments had taken place, as that to not disclose would be misleading people that you looked this way naturally. This is a tricky one. I can see why people don’t share when they have had treatments. There’s most definitely a form of judgement that occurs when people find out you’ve had something done. My family and friends weren’t too positive about my own decision to try Botox. From comments about my face being frozen and my husband constantly staring at my forehead to see if he can notice anything, has made me wish on occasion that I’d kept it a secret. There is still a stigma attached to having treatments like Botox. I live in Essex and there is a perception that you’re going to look plastic like a cast member of Towie

I myself never planned to keep it a secret. I was interested in what Botox would feel like and what effect it would have and to be honest I thought other people would be too so I’d always planned to write a post on it with before and after photos.  I guess for me I didn’t see the point in hiding it as I didn’t get it done to try and secretly achieve some youthful effect. I had it done because I had lines on my forehead that I had become so obsessed with they were all I saw when I looked at myself in photos. One of the downsides of blogging is that you have to look at photos of yourself a whole lot and you inevitably start to focus on the all flaws you can see. In a digital world where we are constantly uploading that perfect selfie there is a pressure to achieve a perfect look. There are apps for god sake to smooth your face out so it looks line free and airbrushed. I guess what I’m saying is I got so sick of editing out my flaws digitally that I decided to edit them out for real. Yes that’s a bit of a leap, but I hoped that by at least trying it, it would make me happier. Does that mean I’m image obsessed? I don’t think so. People join gyms and start fad diets all the time in an effort to transform the way they look. For me, if you want to change for yourself, to feel better about yourself then no one should make you feel bad for that.

In terms of disclosing though, why should you if you don’t want to? Blogging is full of non-disclosure issues and it is very important to be transparent with your readers, but isn’t there a point when you shouldn’t have to share everything? Of course, if your claiming your new lip liner is the reason your lips look fuller when actually you’ve had a whole host of filler’s then this is another issue. For me I always wanted to share with my readers that I’d had it done and to be able to talk openly and honestly about my experience

My perception of treatments had always been one of extremes. Huge plumped out lips and shiny tight foreheads, but in fact treatments can be done with much more of a natural look. My mind has changed over the last few years as treatments have become much more mainstream to the point where I felt confident enough to try it. If you look at the advance in eyebrow treatments from harsh tattooed brows to the delicate and super natural micro blading that occurs now, I think this is the way facial injectable’s will go. Is this a good thing? I don’t know. I certainly will be educating my readers about all the ins and outs of treatment and it’s not something that should be decided lightly.

Would I have more treatments again? Or repeat this one? At the moment I don’t know. It’s an issue to be discussed in my review post of my actual treatment but I will make the decision for myself and what makes me happy and no one else and I certainly won’t be worrying about how this might mean I’m betraying my sisterhood.

This debate is definitely one with many sides of the coin. If you want to get involved in the discussion and share your opinion, then there will be a twitter chat hosted by Thirty Plus in partnership with Allergen on Thursday 9th March at 8pm. You can find all the details here https://www.facebook.com/events/1918343948399119/

Interested in finding out more about Juvederm aesthetic treatments in general? You can discover your local reputable practitioner and clinic here: https://locator.juvederm.co.uk/

Debs

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This is a sponsored post commissioned by Allergan; but all images and all opinions are my own.

1 Comment

  1. March 8, 2017 / 6:26 pm

    This is a really interesting post and interesting debate;women should be just free to express their beauty in whatever way that makes them happy. I completely respect anyone’s right to do what they want with their body etc. A lot of men weight lift to look bigger/muscular, isn’t that the same?

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