Singer Jessie Reyez opened up about beauty standards in the industry and shared her own point of perspective on femininity. She recently wrote a song No Sweat for Secret’s Raise It Up campaign. The song is about her individual style and liberation to sketch her own identity.
The Figures singer talked about the rigid and non-inclusive ideals of beauty carved by mainstream media. According to her, what is being depicted is hardly ever the reality, and this non-existent and impossible to attain perfection is ultimately detrimental for little girls. While talking to PEOPLE, she said:
"I mean, [expletive], you can turn on the TV, you can literally go on Instagram, you can look at any sort of media and a lot of it is inundated by this beauty standard that's so distanced from what the norm is. Look at how it's affecting young girls.”
Jessie shared that her feminist anthem was meant to properly convey where she stands when it comes to mainstream beauty standards. Lending her song to Secret was an attempt to align herself with the brand that shares her goal of "championing and empowering women."
“It's imperative to highlight and celebrate those people, artists and brands that make an effort to go the other way, to go uphill, to show that beauty doesn't really have a definition and can come in all shapes and sizes."
The 29-year-old singer credited her parents for their upbringing and said they allowed her to choose her own identity and not cram her into one of the boxes.
"I often heard, 'Little girls are supposed to be in pink' and 'Little girls are supposed to be groomed,' because my hair was in the perennial ponytail and I was always wearing my brother's clothes," Jessie shared. "But it was cool [with my family]. I remember being mistaken for a boy and my dad not feeling a way about it. It was just like, 'Whatever — however, Jess wants to go is going to be fine.'"
"My mom helped me feel more like myself at a young age and be impermeable to other people's influences and rules about what I should be dressing like," she added. "If I wanted to dye my hair, if I wanted to cut up curtains and make a dress, she was always okay with it as long as I was healthy."