Breaking Beauty News: Billboards Press Release
We are officially announcing the locations of our first 12 billboards in the Beauty Redefined billboard campaign! Below is our official press release, which has been distributed to a wide variety of local media outlets. We would encourage any readers or supporters who have connections with news organizations or media outlets of any kind to distribute this press release! We would like to maximize the impact of these billboards far beyond their actual locations along Utah roads, where millions of drivers will see them. Their messages are critical! Below is the text version, and here is a PDF attachment of the following information: Beauty Redefined Billboards News Release
Nation’s First Positive Body Image Billboards Debut in Utah July 28-29
Salt Lake City (July 14, 2011) – Twelve billboards promoting positive body image – the first of their kind in the state or the nation – will debut on Utah roadsides Thursday and Friday, July 28 & 29, 2011. As part of our not-for-profit “Beauty Redefined” project (at www.beautyredefined.net), we (25-year-old twin sisters and U of U PhD students Lindsay and Lexie Kite) will use billboards to promote positive views of female bodies and beauty in and around what Forbes magazine has called “the vainest city in the nation.” Of the 12 public service announcement billboards hosted by Reagan Outdoor, five signs will be posted in and around Salt Lake City, with seven others dispersed throughout the northern part of the state – from Logan and Ogden to Layton and Provo. We are proud to start this billboard campaign here on our home turf and to expand much further in the near future.
This groundbreaking use of for-profit media to generate feelings of empowerment among women is unheard of in a media-saturated world that so often depends on female insecurity to sell products and services. We hope people of all ages will see the happy, uplifting messages on these billboards and be reminded that women are worth more than their looks. They are valuable and capable whether or not they fit unattainable ideals of beauty that are presented as so normal and so attainable throughout media. Our master’s and PhD work in media and body image focuses on the fact that girls and women who feel better about their bodies are shown to treat their bodies better throughout their lives. If girls feel OK about their bodies – regardless of what they look like – they are much more likely to make healthy choices and maintain healthy lifestyles. Unfortunately, studies show that females today are experiencing epidemic rates of body dissatisfaction and even body hatred, which does not lend itself to positive health choices.
Though the four specific designs are currently under wraps until their debut on Utah roadsides – or through the help of interested media outlets – we are happily spreading the carefully chosen slogans we have selected for the eye-catching signs:
- You are capable of much more than being looked at.
- There is more to be than eye candy.
- Your reflection does not define your worth.
- If beauty hurts, we’re doing it wrong.
The specific locations of each of the 12 billboards are as follows:
Salt Lake City: 2755 E. 3300 South (North Side)
South Salt Lake: I-15 at 2820 S. 460 West (West Side) & 3007 S. State Street (East Side)
Murray: I-15 at 4195 South (West Side) & I-15 at 5051 South (East Side)
West Valley: 4219 W. 5415 South (South Side)
Logan: 1120 S. Main Street (East Side)
Layton: 1600 N. Main Street (East Side)
Ogden: 3385 S. Harrison Blvd. (West Side)
Roy: 1822 W. Riverdale Rd. (North Side)
Provo: 1520 N. State Street (East Side) & 750 S. University (East Side)
About Beauty Redefined: This project is dedicated to help all people recognize and reject harmful messages about female bodies and female worth. If you’ve glanced at a magazine or turned on the TV in the last decade, you’ve got a good idea of what media’s definition of an attractive woman looks like: she’s tall, usually white, has long, flowing hair, is surgically enhanced, blemish-free and very thin. In fact, academic research tells it like we see it: studies show the women we see in media these days are thinner than ever and very often severely underweight. On top of that, surgical and digital enhancement has become an unquestioned standard. And in a world where a constant flow of media images far outnumbers women we could ever see face to face, this unrealistic ideal has become the norm in our minds. A counterfeit, dangerous, unattainable norm. When we only see a certain type of woman presented positively in media, from fitness magazines to TV dramas, it’s no wonder media is consistently linked to body hatred, disordered eating and an unhealthy focus on appearance. Profit-driven media, hand in hand with the multi-billion-dollar beauty and weight loss industries, rely on us believing a lie. The lie tells us beauty comes in one form that anyone can attain with enough money, time and effort. It tells us that women who don’t fit the ideal are doomed to be undesirable and unhappy. This sinister lie that female worth is dependent upon appearance is incredibly successful, but now that we recognize we’re in a battle for women’s worth and well being, we can actually start to defend ourselves!
About Us: We are Lindsay Kite and Lexie Kite, 25-year-old identical twin sisters and third-year PhD students in Communication at the University of Utah, studying representations of female bodies in popular media. We have a passion for helping girls and women recognize and reject harmful messages about their bodies and what “beauty” means and looks like. Beauty Redefined represents our work to take back beauty for females everywhere through continuing the discussion about body image, women’s potential and media influence through our website, our Facebook page and most prominently through regular speaking engagements in both secular and religious settings, from high schools and academic conferences to treatment centers and church firesides. Our co-authored master’s thesis and current doctoral work forms the basis for a one-hour visual presentation on recognizing and rejecting harmful media ideals about beauty and health, which we have presented to thousands of people across the Utah, Idaho and Nevada since March 2009.
Our Major Donors: The New Haven Residential Treatment Center of Spanish Fork, Utah graciously donated a significant amount toward funding the billboards and is a wonderful supporter of our work. The billboard design work was donated by Ripe Concepts, based in Salt Lake City.