“But in a society with such a surplus of individualists, we have no other choice but to be ourselves—all other positions have been filled,”

Style Has No Limits

Ask any woman the question “Do you feel beautiful?” and most will answer “No”. Most would also then rhyme off a list of their shortcomings: legs too short, breasts too large, shoulders too broad, and so forth. Women subconsciously continue to assess themselves according to deeply rooted societal standards for beauty.

Three women who wear bigger clothing sizes agreed to be photographed for the latest instalment of the “Style Has No Limits” autumn urban fashion collection, a collaboration between Julia Janus and Moteris magazine.The collection is dedicated to not only women of different age groups but also different body sizes. Three very interesting personalities took part in the photo shoot: family physician Evelina Neverdauskaitė-Rudzikienė, hair stylist Eglė Ščiukaitė, and communications project manager Eglė Paliulienė. Not only were they unafraid to pose before the camera lens, but they also opened up about the societal stereotypes that determine which women are considered attractive and which aren’t.  “Style isn’t something that can be constrained by age, clothing size, skin colour, or hairstyle. After all, these days style is something that gives sense to individuality,” says Eglė Paliulienė, one of the project’s ambassadors.

Though the reasons are unclear, most women still try to live up to society’s standards for beauty, and yet they forget their true selves. If you’ve decided to spoil yourself, don’t beat yourself up afterwards. Permanent impulse control doesn’t bring us joy, and a thin body isn’t a guarantee that you’ll be universally liked. Don’t we have to like ourselves first and foremost? After joining the project, Eglė Ščiukaitė said that drawing attention to this problem raises awareness about the stereotypes that limit us, hinder us in life, and keep us from being ourselves. “I think projects like this boost our self-confidence and help reduce body-shaming,” says Ščiukaitė.

Designer Julija Janus is convinced that it isn’t age or clothing size that makes a person beautiful or attractive. A healthy person can be XS or XXXL, whether they’re in their twenties or sixties. “The most important thing is to believe in oneself and love oneself. It’s not up to your friend, co-worker, or neighbour to decide if you are pretty”, she says. As a strong-willed woman, Evelina says no one can ever tell her that “enough is simply enough”. “I always make my own choices”, she says with a smile, adding that she never loses sleep over her build. “Standards only exists in our minds, and we alone are responsible for our bodies”. 

And, in fact, an exaggerated need to be liked by others, conforming to their requirements, only lowers our own self-esteem. We seek out ideals so that we can look like someone else. “But in a society with such a surplus of individualists, we have no other choice but to be ourselves—all other positions have been filled,” says Evelina, laughing heartily. When you understand that you also have some good traits alongside your shortcomings, then you find self-love, and when you notice that those around you do too, then you develop bonds with others.

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