July 23, 2015

“Individually we are warriors. Together we can be an army, we’re all fighting our own battles but seeing other warriors fight alongside us gives us strength.”

#BeautifulWarriors is one of the most empowering and positive social media campaigns I have had the pleasure of taking part in. Casey Bryden, Co-founder of Sunbella decided to launch this campaign to unite women and support each other through sharing their battles and “truths” via social media.

The concept of #BeautifulWarriors was born six months ago when Bryden decided to use the concept of “warriors” as a theme for a photoshoot for Sunbella, comparing the parasols to “a shield that could prevent some skin cancer battles.” As a small business owner she spends a lot of time on social media and noticed “that sometimes the positive online personas contradict the difficulties us and our friends are having in real life.” As powerful as social media is it has perpetuated a culture of validation and increased everyone’s levels of #FOMO because of the highly edited lives that we portray.

After this realisation Bryden decided it would be “a good idea to try to get some truths into social media, to show that our lives aren’t as perfect as they may seem, and hopefully help people to not feel as alone with their problems.” The campaign is all about trying to be more understanding and supportive of others and in the long term be more empathetic, “we’ll be all a lot stronger if we stand together, rather than tear each other down.”

“I wear this warrior face paint for every other girl and woman who feels uneasy in her own skin, even if you can’t see it now, you are beautiful.”

the essentialist blog 2And so I have taken part in this campaign as I am guilty of having a curated social media profile and most people, even those close to me would not know the internal battles I suffered and still have. The thought of sharing my “truth” actually terrifies me as did taking these photos, but the whole process has been rather cathartic and I hope that anyone who reads this will find the same.

I’ve battled depression and related issues since I was in my early teens and low self-esteem has followed me into my twenties. If you know me personally, follow me on Instagram or read my blog you might have noticed that I hate looking directly at the camera, to this day I still feel uneasy in my own skin. This campaign has enabled me to open up about this issue and to some degree tackle it with these photographs, a big thank you to Ryan and Jessica who were both very very kind and wonderful on the day!

Below are a few of the beautiful and brave warriors who have shared their truth, I would love to hear yours.

the essentialist blog 3Show your support by taking a photo of yourself wearing warrior paint, #beautifulwarriors and share a “truth” that you normally wouldn’t share on social media.

Photography by Ryan Ammon and makeup by Jessica from J H Society Xx Nadine

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