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Victoria Secret; Victoria Secret song; body positivity

Victoria's Secret responds to viral song.

By now you may have heard the song "Victoria's Secret" by Jax, who wrote the song for a young teen girl she babysits after the girl tried on bathing suits at the famous clothing store chain.

The teen's experience was less than ideal, as she was brought to tears over mean comments about her body from other girls. In response, Jax quickly cranked out a song about what she considers the potential self-esteem harm caused by the lingerie giant and uploaded it to TikTok where it went crazy viral with more than 39 million views. It has become such a cultural phenomenon, that it even crossed over from TikTok to the Billboard charts. So, it's no surprise that the song caught the attention of Victoria's Secret PINK CEO Amy Hauk.


Girls and women have been perusing the racks of Victoria's Secret for decades. The yearly fashion show that depicted tall, thin models donning enormous angel wings was something to look forward to for millions of people. But for others, it was a reminder that their body type didn't fit the mold of what was deemed "beautiful" by one company's standards. That insecurity-inducing impact in advertising is exactly what the song is about and why it resonated with so many people online.

Recreation of Victoria's Secret's letter

Canva

The virility of the catchy summer bop is what catapulted the song to the attention of Hauk, who then reached out to Jax about finding a way to be more inclusive. In response, Jax turned to her 11 million followers to encourage them to put their suggestions in her comments.

Jax said in the video, "I don't feel comfortable speaking on behalf of an entire generation in a manipulative, non-inclusive marketing culture." The songwriter went on to say, "Since Victoria's Secret is paying attention to my account, I'm asking anyone who feels like they never had a voice, or ever had a say in the matter to comment on this video." She tells her followers to let the company know what they "need to feel safe and represented, and comfortable and beautiful in today's society."

@jaxwritessongs

My response to Victoria’s Secret. The floor is yours…. #victoriassecret #inclusivity #speakyourmind

The women did not disappoint. They came in, flooding Jax's comments section with suggestions on what they'd like to see. Shoelover99 commented, "We want REAL WOMEN! scars, stretch marks, tattoos, we want ALL WOMEN to feel beautiful in the product & with size inclusive."

TikTok user Heysquirrelfriend said, "How about the "older" ladies in the world? We like to feel loved and accepted too! Because our age is over 50 doesn't mean we don't feel young inside."

The overall comments section was filled with women asking for inclusivity in sizes. I'm not sure if it's Jax's song, the comments section or something that has been in the works, but a press release went out announcing more inclusive bra sizes by partnering with Elomi, an inclusive lingerie company. It includes band sizes from 34 to 46 and cups from DD to O. With this very new development, it certainly seems as if the brand is paying attention to the desires of the people wearing its products. Women everywhere are hoping the new blip of inclusivity from the brand isn't short-lived.

Photo courtesy of Girls at Work

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Girls are bombarded with messages from a very young age telling them that they can’t, that is too big, this is too heavy, those are too much.

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via Lewis Speaks Sr. / Facebook

This article originally appeared on 02.25.21


Middle school has to be the most insecure time in a person's life. Kids in their early teens are incredibly cruel and will make fun of each other for not having the right shoes, listening to the right music, or having the right hairstyle.

As if the social pressure wasn't enough, a child that age has to deal with the intensely awkward psychological and biological changes of puberty at the same time.

Jason Smith, the principal of Stonybrook Intermediate and Middle School in Warren Township, Indiana, had a young student sent to his office recently, and his ability to understand his feelings made all the difference.

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All images provided by Adewole Adamson

It begins with more inclusive conversations at a patient level

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Adewole Adamson, MD, of the University of Texas, Austin, aims to create more equity in health care by gathering data from more diverse populations by using artificial intelligence (AI), a type of machine learning. Dr. Adamson’s work is funded by the American Cancer Society (ACS), an organization committed to advancing health equity through research priorities, programs and services for groups who have been marginalized.

Melanoma became a particular focus for Dr. Adamson after meeting Avery Smith, who lost his wife—a Black woman—to the deadly disease.

melanoma,  melanoma for dark skin Avery Smith (left) and Adamson (sidenote)

This personal encounter, coupled with multiple conversations with Black dermatology patients, drove Dr. Adamson to a concerning discovery: as advanced as AI is at detecting possible skin cancers, it is heavily biased.

To understand this bias, it helps to first know how AI works in the early detection of skin cancer, which Dr. Adamson explains in his paper for the New England Journal of Medicine (paywall). The process uses computers that rely on sets of accumulated data to learn what healthy or unhealthy skin looks like and then create an algorithm to predict diagnoses based on those data sets.

This process, known as supervised learning, could lead to huge benefits in preventive care.

After all, early detection is key to better outcomes. The problem is that the data sets don’t include enough information about darker skin tones. As Adamson put it, “everything is viewed through a ‘white lens.’”

“If you don’t teach the algorithm with a diverse set of images, then that algorithm won’t work out in the public that is diverse,” writes Adamson in a study he co-wrote with Smith (according to a story in The Atlantic). “So there’s risk, then, for people with skin of color to fall through the cracks.”

Tragically, Smith’s wife was diagnosed with melanoma too late and paid the ultimate price for it. And she was not an anomaly—though the disease is more common for White patients, Black cancer patients are far more likely to be diagnosed at later stages, causing a notable disparity in survival rates between non-Hispanics whites (90%) and non-Hispanic blacks (66%).

As a computer scientist, Smith suspected this racial bias and reached out to Adamson, hoping a Black dermatologist would have more diverse data sets. Though Adamson didn’t have what Smith was initially looking for, this realization ignited a personal mission to investigate and reduce disparities.

Now, Adamson uses the knowledge gained through his years of research to help advance the fight for health equity. To him, that means not only gaining a wider array of data sets, but also having more conversations with patients to understand how socioeconomic status impacts the level and efficiency of care.

“At the end of the day, what matters most is how we help patients at the patient level,” Adamson told Upworthy. “And how can you do that without knowing exactly what barriers they face?”

american cancer society, skin cacner treatment"What matters most is how we help patients at the patient level."https://www.kellydavidsonstudio.com/

The American Cancer Society believes everyone deserves a fair and just opportunity to prevent, find, treat, and survive cancer—regardless of how much money they make, the color of their skin, their sexual orientation, gender identity, their disability status, or where they live. Inclusive tools and resources on the Health Equity section of their website can be found here. For more information about skin cancer, visit cancer.org/skincancer.

via Pixabay

The show must go on… and more power to her.

There are few things that feel more awful than being stranded at the altar by your spouse-to-be. That’s why people are cheering on Kayley Stead, 27, from the U.K. for turning a day of extreme disappointment into a party for her friends, family and most importantly, herself.

According to a report in The Metro, on Thursday, September 15, Stead woke up in an Airbnb with her bridemaids, having no idea that her fiance, Kallum Norton, 24, had run off early that morning. The word got to Stead’s bridesmaids at around 7 a.m. the day of the wedding.

“[A groomsman] called one of the maids of honor to explain that the groom had ‘gone.’ We were told he had left the caravan they were staying at in Oxwich Bay (the venue) at 12:30 a.m. to visit his family, who were staying in another caravan nearby and hadn’t returned. When they woke in the morning, he was not there and his car had gone,” Jordie Cullen wrote on a GoFundMe page.

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Pop Culture

14 things that will remain fun no matter how old you get

Your inner child will thank you for doing at least one of these.

Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

Swings can turn 80-year-olds into 8-year-olds in less that two seconds.

When we’re kids, fun comes so easily. You have coloring books and team sports and daily recess … so many opportunities to laugh, play and explore. As we get older, these activities get replaced by routine and responsibility (and yes, at times, survival). Adulthood, yuck.

Many of us want to have more fun, but making time for it still doesn’t come as easily as it did when we were kids—whether that’s because of guilt, a long list of other priorities or because we don’t feel it’s an age-appropriate thing to long for.

Luckily, we’ve come to realize that fun isn’t just a luxury of childhood, but really a vital aspect of living well—like reducing stress, balancing hormone levels and even improving relationships.

More and more people of all ages are letting their inner kids out to play, and the feelings are delightfully infectious.

You might be wanting to instill a little more childlike wonder into your own life, and not sure where to start. Never fear, the internet is here. Reddit user SetsunaSaigami asked people, “What always remains fun no matter how old you get?” People’s (surprisingly profound) answers were great reminders that no matter how complex our lives become, simple joy will always be important.

Here are 14 timeless pleasures to make you feel like a kid again:

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