What happened when I tried glitter boobs
GLITTER boobs are the festival look du jour right now. Filed under almost any festival hashtag these days you'll see evidence of women decorating their breasts with shimmering paints, multi-coloured jewels and glistening gemstones that make them look like mermaids having a boogie at Coachella before they make their way back to Atlantis.
But building an elaborate kaleidoscopic work of art on your chest does come with its own set of complications. Like … how comfortable is it to walk around without a bra all day, especially when that day may involve dancing?
How does one make the glitter stick sufficiently to boobs that are likely to encounter some alcoholic drink spillage and sweat?
And what about the creeps; how do you get those undesirables to avert their eyes?
We asked makeup artist Megan Smink, 21, about her recent experience rocking glitter boobs at a bush doof out Byron Bay-way, and what tips she has for girls who are keen to try the trend.
Choose your audience wisely
For me, glitter boobs were just another trend I wanted to try. As a makeup artist, I'm a creative person and, while I don't buy into every kitsch trend I see on the internet, I like to experiment with dressing up, especially at music festivals.
I knew that Rabbits Eat Lettuce - a bush doof in Kippenduff, NSW, attended by a few hundred people - was the perfect place to express my sparkly self.
On its website, the festival's own mission statement not only encourages outlandish costumes by directing people to "leave the street clothes at home" but it also insists on guests having a "be positive" attitude.
"Give praise to strangers," cheer the organisers, adding, "Smile at everyone".
Of course, with rules like that, this festival tends to attract the hippy types; people who are very unique and don't judge the way you dress. And, once arriving at the event it's very clear you could go out there in your pyjamas and absolutely no one would care!
The right way to glit the tit
When it comes to glitter boobs, you should really gauge how comfortable you are with being topless; if you're going to be shrinking in shame the whole time, maybe this isn't your vibe.
While you don't have to, I put band aids over my nipples just to have some coverage as the glitter came off. But, if you're less comfortable you could try some nipple tassels, or bigger-chested gals could even wear a slinky bra for some support because no outfit should discourage you from dancing.
I went ahead and used cosmetic glitter glue to set the sparkles and gemstones on my skin. If that's not handy, an alternative could be something like lash adhesive and, if you have sensitive skin, you could use pawpaw ointment to make a paste and stick things on that way. But, be warned, it's messy business so prepare to get it on your clothes, and leave a trail of fairy dust pretty much wherever you walk.
I wasn't the only girl with sparkly boobs at the festival
While I knew the environment I was going into was one promoting relaxed positivity, I still was a little nervous that I'd feel judged by the crowd.
Walking around with just glitter on my breasts felt a little uncomfortable to start with but I very quickly got used to it and felt totally accepted in that space.
As people walked past, most comments were variations of, "You look beautiful today!" or, "You must have put so much effort in!" (Which was true - I'd spent hours gluing jewels to my body in my tent that morning!)
Sooooo … glitter might actually scare away creeps?!
My favourite comment was from a guy we were camping next to who made a point to say, "You look amazing!" And then said, "If you catch me looking, I'm not trying to be disrespectful and stare at your breasts, I'm just admiring the work you've put in because I saw you sitting there for three hours putting the jewels on!"
I mean, of course it's only natural he would look - I had all these gems lighting up my whole chest! - but, I thought it was decent of him to try and make me feel comfortable instead of just gawking.
Glitter boobs and social media
To be honest, I was nervous about posting pictures on social media, where obviously not everyone has the same bohemian attitude as my friends in the bush.
Eventually, when I did get around to popping up a pic on Instagram I used the caption to poke a little fun at myself and hashtagged, "#sorrymum". But, thankfully, all I got was positive comments.
Frankly, I was surprised I didn't get any creepy DMs.
The dark side of glitter boobs
FYI: The most annoying thing about glitter boobs wasn't pervs hassling me, it was getting the bloody stuff off.
After some trial and error, the absolute best household item to use to remove the glitter from your bare chest is A LINT ROLLER! Or sticky tape. The key is to use the stickiness to peel off the glitter. Don't be an amateur and make the mistake of using makeup remover, or any liquid really, or you're going to be a mess and the sparkles will just slip-slide around your body.
What's the big deal with glitter boobs anyway?
I hate that women still get so much discrimination and judgment when it comes to their bodies. Men are shirtless all the time and the fact that it's 2018 and #freethenipple is STILL a thing is crazy to me.
To look at them, male and female nipples are so the same! Even on a website where I bought my festival clothing, I saw them selling nipple pasties that were of pictures of nipples. So essentially, a woman can wear fake nipples and it's okay, but if she shows her actual nipples she's a perverted exhibitionist? Can someone please explain the difference to me between showing a male nipple and a female nipple? Anybody? I'll wait.
I still wouldn't rock the glitter IRL
In the "real world", not everyone is as accepting of people's right to dress as they please. While backward, it's still common for some in society hate on women who don't aspire to be conservative and covered up.
Even though my glitter boob debut was an exhilarating success, I wouldn't walk down the street in my everyday life with glitter and only glitter on because I know I would be made to feel so uncomfortable.
I'm not naive. I know the shady types of people who are out there. I know how much abuse and random catcalls women put up with daily, and I'd expect that to be my experience if I walked down the streets of Brisbane without a top on. Sadly, not everyone is not as kind or woke to the fact that the female body can be sensual and celebrated, without warranting some kind of sexual harassment.
This article originally appeared on WHIMN and has been republished with permission.