Throughout July and August 2011, the nation’s first non-profit body-positive billboards were displayed across northern Utah! We at Beauty Redefined are beyond excited that we were able to put up 12 billboards on roadsides here in our home base, and we are incredibly indebted to the 100+ people who donated and are continuing to donate to make this campaign happen! We LOVE you! And we know these billboards have provided and will continue to provide (with your help) a reminder for people of all ages that women are worth more than the sum of their parts. Women are capable of much more than being looked at. There is more to be than eye candy. If beauty hurts, we’re doing it wrong. And your reflection does NOT define your worth. See these groundbreakingly positive messages on our bright, beautiful billboards that lined major roadsides in Utah and will appear across the country and beyond with your support!
You’ll notice there are no bodies on these billboards. We decided to take bodies completely out of the equation. For women, bodies tend to hog a lot of the attention not only in media but in our lives. We need to expand the conversation about women, about beauty, about health and about happiness AWAY from sizes, weights, shapes and looks. In a media landscape that regularly cuts women’s faces/heads/eyes completely out of images, we’re doing just the opposite! We’re making eye contact, asking for attention to the truthfulness of these messages — not the looks of the girls/women holding the signs.
Though millions of people saw these four billboards along Utah roads throughout the rest of the summer and through the media attention we received (see examples below!), we know these messages need to reach roadsides FAR beyond our home base. With more donations, we can display these billboards in a variety of places throughout the country at discounted PSA costs. And with your help spreading these images in any way possible (sharing on Facebook, Twitter, pinning on Pinterest, e-mailing to friends and family, blogging about it, reporting on it, etc.), many more people can receive (at the very least) a boost. A reminder of female worth. A conversation starter. A push to see themselves and value others as more than objects to be looked at. To help raise money and spread these true messages, we have made them available on beautiful post-it notes and postcards! Check them out HERE.
To donate to this not-for-profit campaign and help us spread these messages to roadsides across the U.S., you can do that through this button:
We received some excellent news coverage of this new campaign! See our newsroom for a variety of TV, radio and print interviews we’ve done throughout this project!
This is only the beginning! With more support and donations, we hope to expand this campaign nationwide. 100% of all donations go toward funding billboards. All time and efforts have been donated by Beauty Redefined, Ripe Concepts (who designed our beautiful billboards at no cost!), and photographer Greg Shearer of Harvey Brand Imagery.
For more information on how this campaign started and why we’re doing this, keep reading…
So … here in Salt Lake City, we have lots of billboards promoting breast enhancement, liposuction, eye lifts, laser hair removal … every “beauty enhancer” you can imagine paired with up-close images of idealized, digitally altered bodies at every turn. In fact, our home turf was very unfortunately named the “vainest city in the nation” by Forbes magazine. That sucks. So one day, with the help of an off-handed Facebook status complaining about the prevalent beauty billboards on I-15 and encouraging FB friends who offered to donate $ to support our purchase of a POSITIVE billboard for women, we decided to do it!
After pitching the idea to Reagan Outdoor (major billboard company here), we were told nothing could happen unless we were a government-recognized non-profit. After lots of paperwork and wonderful support from our school, we gained non-profit status under the University of Utah (where we both work and obtained master’s degrees and soon PhDs). We described our idea in a website post, created a PayPal donate button and begged our readers and Facebook fans, and within about three weeks, we raised enough money for TWELVE (drastically discounted for PSAs) billboards!
Most of our donors are regular individuals who recognize that the status of women’s self-esteem and body image is in need of desperate help. And this is a great place to start. Below is a colorful and comprehensive list of those wonderful supporters (with sizes and placement randomly selected), topped by New Haven Residential Treatment Center (which graciously donated enough for two billboards) and Natalie Andrews-Wardel of The Bobby Pin, Inês Almeida of 7Wonderlicious and MANY others.
For more information on the status of female body image and how we can all recognize and reject harmful messages about women’s bodies and worth, please follow these links: