A London blogger who learned to love her self-confessed ‘saggy boobs’ is challenging society’s perception of the perfect breasts with the social media campaign #SaggyBoobsMatter.
Chidera Eggerue, better known online as Slumflower, started the campaign in a bid to stop people aspiring to unnatural body aims, after a lifelong battle with her own breasts which left her wanting cosmetic surgery.
Eggerue told Buzzfeed she started the campaign after getting tired of seeing ‘perfect’ representations of women’s breasts in the media and shops.
how to style saggy boobs: a tutorial
step 1 – wear the damn outfit.
— THE SLUMFLOWER (@theslumflower) October 11, 2017
Pointing out the lack of diversity in the media, Eggerue said she would find herself dispirited by the packaging bras came in, which she felt would often show ‘a white woman with perky boobs’.
A lack of representation of saggy-looking boobs when I used to go bra shopping in M&S [as a young teenager] made me realise that something is wrong with the way the world views women’s bodies.
The packaging would always have a picture of a white woman with perky boobs, yet when I’d try on the same bra in my correct size, my boobs just wouldn’t look like the model pictured.
Egguere explained those experiences left her facing emotional issues too, adding:
It was so bad that at that age I had already decided that I’d get a boob job once I got my first job at 18.
I reached 18 and didn’t get a job, let alone a boob job, so I continued self-loathing until I reached 19 and became tired of feeling like a stranger in my own body.
I decided I’d had enough and made the choice to stop wearing a bra.
Since July 2017, she has been sharing pictures of herself without a bra, with captions that are defiant and inspirational.
Fast-forward to 23: I’ve now reached a position of feeling comfortable in my body, but I wanted other women to feel like this, so I had to start the conversation by using my own body as an example.
Through creating #SaggyBoobsMatter, I have been able to help women articulate their own body image hangups – especially slim women who don’t really know where they stand in the body positivity movement.
Inevitably, Egguere has faced backlash from the archaic corners of the Internet who have taken it upon themselves to body shame her, for reasons which aren’t clear.
One Nigerian music producer Don Jazzy even turned her into a mean meme, for which he later apologised after Egguere called him out.
I love being body shamed and slandered by Nigerian musicians.
— THE SLUMFLOWER (@theslumflower) January 15, 2018
Egguere told Buzzfeed:
Overall, I think the movement has been received with a lot of sarcasm and insults from men and a few confused women, which doesn’t surprise me.
This concerns me a lot because other women who look like me are seeing some of the horrible responses to this movement and are now probably feeling more insecure about their bodies when they see the vitriol I receive for showing up boldly and proudly.
Most of the responses have been horrible and disappointing, but I’ve learnt to not take them so personally. Men are socialised to see women as vaginas that think, sometimes. Because of this, women’s bodies are picked apart as if we only exist to satisfy.
Meanwhile, Egguere says it’s all worth it to help out other women who went through the same body battles, as a consequence of societal beauty stereotypes.
She has a message for anyone who feels their body isn’t deserving of love:
For the women who look like me: Your saggy boobs matter. And from now until you die, what’s going to matter, ultimately, is your character. Sometimes people are scared of what they haven’t been taught to accept.
This #SAGGYBOOBSMATTER movement is not about me. This is for any woman who knows the feeling of questioning her own body because it doesn’t meet other people’s standards. If this doesn’t matter to you, it matters to someone else.
Ain’t no representation without repetition. pic.twitter.com/SS3SL0JwLE
— THE SLUMFLOWER (@theslumflower) February 4, 2018
She added: ‘We still have to exist loudly, though.’
From breastfeeding mothers to the very bodies women were born in, one isn’t any better than another.
A former emo kid who talks too much about 8Chan meme culture, the Kardashian Klan, and how her smartphone is probably killing her. Francesca is a Cardiff University Journalism Masters grad who has done words for BBC, ELLE, The Debrief, DAZED, an art magazine you’ve never heard of and a feminist zine which never went to print.