Life can prove eternally interesting and problematic at times when you unwittingly have a resting bitch face (RBF), aka Bitchy Resting Face (BRF). I’m talking about a puckered-up, cats-bum facial expression you regularly adopt when relaxed, which is often misinterpreted as rage, contempt and sadness.
Think Hollywood RBF-aficionados such as actors Kristen Stewart, Charlize Theron and Jeremy Renner; singer Avril Lavigne and rapper Kanye West; fashion designer Victoria Beckham and arguably the most famous one of all, US editrix Anna Wintour of Vogue, second only to the original RBF: her majesty, Queen Elizabeth II.
Of course, for these A-list celebrities (and fashion/British royalty), it must get a tad wearing having paparazzi follow you around 24/7, but their famed surly facial expressions as a consequence of resting bitch face syndrome are a true joy to behold.
Sadly, in real life you can’t make like fashion icon Anna Wintour and scowl your way through the day without offending someone. I should know – I too have a serious resting bitch face myself, which has landed me in a lot of hot water over the years.
At 41, I’ve gotten much better at adopting a poker face, but it’s taken many years and patience to perfect. My involuntary RBF has offended everyone from high school teachers through to newsroom bosses over the years – there have been some seriously awkward moments when I’ve had to explain myself.
And what can you really say? “Sorry, my face just does this on its own?” Or what about: “I was just born this way – sorry.” Once, I felt compelled to explain away my RBF to a close work colleague, a fellow journo I’m still friends with to this day, by saying: “Look, when I concentrate, I look really cranky, sorry in advance.”
You see, unfortunately I frown a lot when I’m working – it’s just what I do, I can’t help it. It doesn’t mean I’m remotely unhappy, sad, angry or being judgmental. Hell, maybe I should get a face full of Botox so no one can ever accuse me of having any facial expression!
And so I really relate to and empathise with Twilight actor Kristen Stewart’s RBF trauma in particular, which always seems to get her into trouble. I mean, why should she have to smile all the time – wouldn’t that look even weirder?!
Recently, when asked about her RBF, she told ELLE UK: “The whole smiling thing is weird because I actually smile a lot. I literally want to be like: ‘Dude, you would think I was cool if you got to know me’.” I’m feeling you, K-Stew.
What do you think? Do you have a RBF?
Images via bustle.com, defamer.gawker.com, croissantbouffant.com, linkedin.com
Kristen Stewart is the latest in a string of celebrities keen to claim the title of “feminist“. In her recent interview with The Daily Beast, Stewart says that it is “ridiculous thing to say you’re not a feminist”.
While the Twilight actress almost makes a good point, her argument falls short when referring to the “overly-aggressive types” that are “discrediting” other feminists.
While she doesn’t go into who these aggressive types are, it would appear K-Stew’s brand of feminism is just the opposite: passive. If we are to subscribe to her logic, the only reason to call yourself a feminist is because it would be “strange” not to (because equality – duh!).
As a celebrity, Stewart has achieved something positive just by calling herself a feminist. But it appears she is the advocate of a kind of responsibility-free feminism: where you can stand for something, without actually participating in it.
Furthermore, Kristen is buying into the precise stereotypes – of the “angry” and “aggressive” woman – that feminism struggles against.
This begs the question, is it enough to just call yourself a feminist?
Prior to 2014, we feminists were used to being rejected by our celeb sisters who stuck to a rather patriarchy-friendly approach to gender issues.
However, things started to pick up earlier this year around Beyonce’s “FEMINIST”-emblazoned VMAs performance. Shortly after that, notorious “non-feminist” Taylor Swift came out with new political priorities, citing her friendship with Lena Dunham as the catalyst for her feminist rebirth. (Previously, a young Ms Swift had said she wouldn’t call herself a feminist because she didn’t think of things as “boys versus girls” – a common misconception about what feminism actually is.)
In an era where women continue to turn their backs on gender equality, I would argue that openly identifying yourself as a feminist is a triumph.
When it is popular to assign feminists labels like “man-hater”, “angry”, or “bitch”, it does take guts to claim such an “unattractive” title. It is this precise ownership of the label, specifically by people like Swift – a decidedly man-loving, feminine, amiable woman – that overwrites this misunderstanding of feminism.
However, this still doesn’t determine whether or not feminism in this context is a role, or just an honorary title.
While many people will buy into whatever their favorite celeb is endorsing, will they actually commit to a movement toward gender equality?
Are they going to challenge their friends in conversations of political, economic and social equality? Will they stand idly by while largely white, male governments legislate issues pertaining exclusively to women, their bodies and their health?
While we aren’t at a stage where we can confirm if feminism is merely the flavour of the month, we can confirm that conversation is rampant – largely thanks to the likes of Kristen, Taylor, Beyonce and Emma.
Swift nailed the relevance of celebrity feminists when speaking of Emma Watson’s UN speech:
“I wish when I was 12-years-old I had been able to watch a video of my favorite actress explaining, in such an intellectual, beautiful, poignant way, the definition of feminism. Because I would have understood it. And then earlier on in my life I would have proudly claimed I was a feminist because I would have understood what the word means.”
It is not so much the label, but about bringing gender equality to the forefront of public conversation so that men, women and children can begin to engage in this crucial issue.
Never have more of our favorite celebs been lobbing their locks and rocking a short do. Women of all ages are proving that short hair can be sophisticated, sexy and versatile! Be inspired by some of the best short hairstyles of the year.
The fringed pixie
Unlike the traditional pixie cut, this year we’re seeing a lot of this style with a fringe. The range of celebs sporting this ‘do proves that you don’t need to have a particular face shape to pull it off. Although, of course, it doesn’t hurt to have Robin Wright’s bone structure!
Chin-length bobs are hot, and also look great on every face shape. Waves are great for adding some volume and framing delicate features, like those of Taylor Swift and Karlie Kloss. Customize your bob to suit your features by moving the part (side or middle) and maybe fashioning a fringe.
The Side Sweep
Jennifer Lawrence and Kristen Stewart are perfect examples of how to wear this look for different occasions. While K-Stew goes the “bed-hair” route, J-Law is looking glamorous on the red carpet with styled-waves. Just part your hair on the side, sweep it over, and pin back the rest.
Images via Redbook Mag
This season seems to be anything-but-traditional with some truly outrageous hairstyles hitting red carpets. If you’ve ever wanted to experiment with your hair, now is the time to do it – you might just stumble across a trend-setting ‘do.
Game of Thrones star, Natalie Dormer, shaved the side of her head for the Hunger Games: Mockingjay. If you’re not as brave as Natalie and fellow side-shaved celeb, Rosario Dawson, you can try a dramatic part and a side braid or sleek sweep, like Jessica Alba and Sophie Turner.
You can catch Nicole Richie in her new reality show with cool lilac locks! Kelly Osborne and Ke$ha are also sporting this outrageous, candy-colored trend.
Kristen Stewart and Jennifer Lawrence make short hair look effortless with their edgy, waved style.
Images via Zimbio, Get the Look, Pinterest, Fashion Style, Just Jared