Remember that Dove Beauty campaign that made you realize how hard you are on yourself and if only you bought Dove products you'd feel better? The editors at the beauty site xoVain may have proved that, in fact, you are just as beautiful as you think you are (or that they're a remarkably good-looking bunch of people).
Though many women felt that the Dove campaign was eye-opening and reinforced feelings they'd long had about how societal expectations places harsh pressures on women to look a certain way, the women at xoVain disagreed. They feel plenty confident about their looks, and cited a recent study that found that women and men participate in "self-enhancement" – i.e. that humans usually think their appearance is better than it is. xoVain agrees; they wrote that Dove is using this new angle to sell products but would be better served with talking about women who like themselves (which, it should be noted, is what they did before).
xoVain's editorial manifesto supports this "you're hot and you know it" outlook on life:
"We believe in using beauty as a tool to make women feel good about themselves, for themselves. This is where you'll go to learn that you're not the only one with curly eyebrows, uneven lips, or weird toenails, and to learn how to deal with them... or not. Because to us, beauty is an option, not an obligation. This is where you'll see that no woman is perfect, but we can all indulge in personal vanity. "
For this video, the editors described themselves in often comically attractive terms and the sketches, done by artist Eric Winkler, turned out much more accurately than those produced for the women in Dove's video:
The point of the original Dove video was to take women who were by all accounts perfectly attractive and make it clear that they've got unrealistic expectations for themselves that make them think they're not as pretty as they are. That was a slight shift from Dove's earlier ad campaigns, which celebrated women who felt beautiful and were beautiful but were "real" – not models. It's unclear what lessons we should take from this recent, incredibly limited experiment; maybe beauty is in the eye of the beholder and if that beholder is yourself, think you're beautiful and you will be? Or maybe, if attractive people call themselves attractive, they're not lying.