Pakistani Artist Shines a Light on This Super-Taboo Body Issue

© and courtesy of Sara Shakeel
Photo of India Irving
Social Media Editor22 November 2017

Emerging Pakistani artist Sara Shakeel has made it her mission to beautify this blemish shared by women across the globe, and the result is breathtaking.

Ladies and gents, we are talking about stretch marks. Love ’em or hate ’em, they are a part of life and they are finally being celebrated through art thanks to Sara and her bold creative experiment.

By medical definition, stretch marks are ‘narrow streaks or lines that occur on the surface of the skin.’ Tending to occur during pregnancy, or from general growth spurts that happen throughout puberty, they are ‘often red or purple to start with before gradually fading to a silvery-white colour.’

In other words, they are completely natural and practically unavoidable for women. Yet traditional beauty standards tell us we need to get rid of them pronto.

Sara decided to challenge this ridiculousness by using sparkling, flamboyant glitter to enhance photographs of her own stretched skin before unabashedly sharing her empowering artwork on Instagram for all to see.

In this way, the artist took a body issue we often prefer to hide and showed us that the marks can actually be beautiful and entrancing.

In an October 31 Instagram post, Sara shared her courageous message with the world: ‘…I have seen my stretch marks grow from the day I started putting on weight, I’d be honest even before uploading it I was thinking why would anyone be interested in my concept of stretch marks turned into glitter or crystals!!! My god I was so wrong!’

And wrong she was! After posting her own blinged-out marks, Sara’s followers from around the world began sending her photos of their own stretchies to bedazzle, and #glitterstretchmarks officially became a thing.

It is amazing to see a young artist taking on such a major female issue as body image and attacking it head on in this unique and beautiful way. Go, Sara, go!

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