i remember seeing this dove video many years ago.

and now this, which i saw on facebook this morning and thankfully seems to be going viral.

the edit is ridiculous. the more i look at the before and after, it just makes me sick. and of course, to make things worse, what is one of their features -- the new skinny pills. we need to spread the word, especially to our children, that many most almost all of the photos we see in these types of magazines are NOT real. they are NOT something to aspire to. they are extremely retouched, airbrushed, liquified, etc. we all need to be teaching our children this, while they're young. and reminding them regularly.

i also came across this website today, OFF OUR CHEST, whose mission it is to 'make the world a happier place for women (and girls)'. seems very interesting and i plan to further explore for sure.  they support the self-esteem act, to protect our girls (petition found here).

ETA:  adding pat's comment (from below) here in my post because i just love it so much...

Beauty is confidence. Beauty is someone who is unabashedly themselves. Beauty is knowing that being ‘you’ exudes an incredible power. Beauty lives in each of us – if we can just allow ourselves to let it shine.

Teaching this to my children is the most important thing I can ever do.