When I was 21, I found a tube of matte red lipstick under my bed, which my sister must have dropped the last time she’d visited. It was MAC’s Ruby Woo, the shade she always wore. My sis — a tall, blonde and beautiful creature — looked so powerful with that red pout. As a fat woman, I’d never felt particularly powerful or comfortable in my body like she seemed to. I had never dared wear anything that might make me stand out even more than I already did.
At that moment, though, something took over me and I tried the lipstick on. I suddenly saw my face transform in the mirror. Don’t get me wrong, I was still just as fat; my cheeks and chins were visible as ever. Still, I felt different. It was as though I saw the person I might become if I stopped trying to