In this Boob Diaries entry, model and artist, Jess (@sayhellojess) shares her experience with bras and her body, her views on feminism, and what role environmental sustainability plays in her life.
Jess in the Coral Bra, size 36E.
Jess wasn’t eased into puberty like some of us were. When she was around the age of 9, her boobs grew overnight, just like that. All she knew since then was that she had to wear underwire bras and underwire bras only. She even had to wear them to sleep. She envied her friends with smaller boobs who could get away with cute, dainty, and most importantly wireless bras and bralettes. It’s only been recently where she’s discovered softer, more comfortable wireless bras which she describes as “a bit of a revelation”.
Jess describes her relationship with her body to be “a work in progress”. Having a breast reduction at 18 years old was a turning point in Jess’ life. Since she was 11 years old, she has been a 38F, but after realising the effect it had on the way she viewed her body, she decided to go down to a 36D. Especially at such a young age of 11, it was difficult to have such big boobs and Jess recalls that all she wanted was to be flat chested.
When asked what advice she would give her teenage self, Jess says that “I think I would just tell my (younger) self to chill out, relax, do what you want.” Jess explains that as a teenager, there is a lot of pressure from your parents and the world and you are bombarded with so many questions that you often don’t know the answer to yet. You are in the midst of finding who you are as a person, your likes and dislikes, what you want to study, what you want to be doing for the next 25 years of your life. There’s so much going on in those few years that it’s important to chill out, and we often forget to.
Jess mentions that although she knows many women in her life who are “vocal and eloquent about what it means to be a feminist”, she personally finds it a hard question to answer. Jess’ mum raised her and her brother by herself which taught her independence and that she doesn’t need to rely on a man for anything. Jess believes that feminism is “a woman who believes that women are equal to men” not just in the sense of splitting the bill on a date or expecting the door to be held open for you, but it has to do with women’s agency, freedom in society and equality.
Here at Lara, environmental sustainability is very importance to us. Jess talks about how every little small action helps although at times we may feel like what we’re doing is not sufficient or significant enough. She compares it to turning up to the site of an earthquake with a brush and pan. How Jess actions sustainability in her life is to be mindful of the places she shops at regarding what they do with clothing waste.