"We spend so much time trying to hide our flaws because the culture has set it up that you have to be ashamed if you're not perfect," says filmmaker Cynthia Wade. "I think girls are tired of it."
Chrissy Teigen radiates body-positive vibes with this selfie, which confirms our hopes and suspicions that models have imperfections, too. "Bruises from bumping kitchen drawer handles for a week. Stretchies say hi!" Teigen says, giving her stretch marks a pet name that we're totally going to start using. Her selfie sends a message of self-love that only an image this intimate could.
Photograph courtesy of Chrissy Teigen
Selfies Let Us Express Our Beliefs
For a couple years there, Miley Cyrus was known more for her tongue than her activism, but with the help of social media, that reputation is changing. Cyrus posted this selfie after the US Supreme Court ruling in favor of same-sex marriage to demonstrate her support and solidarity.
Photograph courtesy of Miley Cyrus
Selfies Invite Us to Get Up Close and Personal
Every Monday on Instagram, Demi Lovato posts a makeup-free selfie with the hashtag #NoMakeupMonday and encourages other women to do the same. Unlike magazine covers, selfies give women the chance to reset society's beauty standards themselves.
Photograph courtesy of Demi Lovato
Selfies Take Us on an Adventure
Selfies aren't just about how we look; they're also about what we're up to. Wielding our own lenses allows us to share the experiences and places that we want to define us. It gives us the opportunity to express how proud we are of our adventures. (Plus, it eliminates the unique horror of having to ask a stranger to take our picture in front of the Grand Canyon).
Photograph courtesy of Anna Kendrick
Selfies Help Us Redefine Beauty
A wise woman once said that happy girls are the prettiest, and in a culture where physical perfection is taken so seriously, it's often up to us to communicate that there are more important things. In this selfie by the pool, Selena Gomez points the camera at her giant laugh, as opposed to her bikini body, to show us her image through her own eyes.
Photograph courtesy of Selena Gomez