You’re an outfit-ruiner. You’re a security blanket. You’re frumpy. You’re uncomfortable. You serve no purpose except to hide body insecurities. I dislike you.
You were created by the clothing industry to perpetuate women’s self-consciousness about their arms. I get it, I’ve been there. I haven’t discussed body insecurities on this platform because it’s a tough subject, and I wanted to keep the tone fun and lighthearted around here. However, life isn’t always fun and lighthearted, and everyone has body insecurities and can relate to this topic. So here we go.
I used to wear cardigans for years because I was self-conscious about my arms, too. Even on the hottest summer day, I’d wear a cardigan, so that the rest of the world couldn’t see what I deemed unfit for society. I’d willingly sweat and make myself uncomfortable so that everyone around me wouldn’t have to be in the presence of my exposed arms. How insane is that? I cannot believe there was ever a time when I thought that was okay.
I still cringe when I see old photos of myself wearing a cardigan. For a period in time, I was afraid to wear something sleeveless without one. I want to go back in time to tell myself that it’s okay to let the world see my arms. Everyone will be fine and the earth will keep spinning. In fact, no one will say anything at all. The harshest critics are your own deprecating thoughts.
It’s hard to pinpoint exactly when I stopped wearing cardigans, but I know there was certainly a point when I decided to never look back. I’m sad for all the years I wasted feeling uncomfortable in my own body, and trying to make others around me feel more comfortable by covering it up.
My arms are not small and never have been, but wearing a cardigan doesn’t make them smaller. Covering them in fabric doesn’t hide their size. My arms are not small but they are strong. In 5th grade, I beat every boy in my class at arm wrestling. I can do at least 10 real pushups without even trying. I can paddle a kayak, carry groceries, and lift furniture. I can open a jar and pop a bottle of champagne. ?
Dear cardigans: no one needs you. You are useless and sad. May you rot in the clearance bin for the rest of eternity, because I’ll never look your way again.