A Day to Celebrate All Women

Want to know why we need an International Women’s Day? Look no further than Mhairi Black MP’s speech.

Misogyny is rife in our society. Women are belittled, threatened, victimised, assaulted and overlooked in all areas of society. Every. Single. Day.

This video is one example why, in my opinion, feminism is still relevant as a political movement. It highlights the very real situation countless women are in currently – subjected to violence and degradation simply for being female.

Violence against women is not in decline. If anything, with technological advances, women are faced with evolving dangers and laws that lack adequate protections. For example, the non-consensual sharing of intimate images, known colloquially as Revenge Porn, is on the rise and only recently did Scottish law catch up to it.

The UK Government’s latest Violence Against Women and Girls Digest found that “violence against adolescent girls is understudied, with most research looking only at the impact on one form of violence”.  Child marriage is a huge issue worldwide, and tens of millions of adolescent girls are subjected to sexual violence every year.

Around the world, girls are being denied education. Or unable to attend school because of period poverty. Female Genital Mutilation is a widespread problem – some 24,000 girls are at risk of undergoing FGM in the UK alone.

Findings from the Wave 10 post-campaign evaluation of the Domestic Abuse Campaign 2006/07 found that “[a] domestic violence incident is recorded every 10 minutes in Scotland”.

Penny Mordaunt highlighted a number of other issues faced by women and girls worldwide. That list is anything but exhaustive, but it does light a fire in my belly.

This International Women’s Day, I’m going to be thinking about the women who don’t get a platform.

The abused women.

The exploited women.

The trafficked women.

The sex workers.

The immigrants.

The overworked.

The unemployed.

The disabled.

The homeless.

The victims.

The survivors.

The trans-women.

The lesbians.

The queer.

The Scottish women.

The women around the world.

The women of colour.

The activists.

The grieving.

The strong.

The loud.

The silenced.

The few.

The many.

Une publication partagée par Femislay (@femislay) le

Top 5 Fave Females

It’s International Women’s Day!

In celebration of all the women out there who work hard, fight the patriarchy and are generally just Girl Bosses, I’ve put together a list of 5 of my biggest role models and current inspirational women to in my life.

Some who didn’t make the top 5 but are more than deserving of a mention: actual Girlboss Sophia Amoruso, Fearne Cotton (her style though), the unstoppable Viola Davis, Carrie Fisher – may she rest in peace, the fierce and fabulous transgender rights activist Laverne Cox and actor, activist and all round great gal Emma Watson.

There are so many more women I could have mentioned, but I’ve have been here for days. I’ll try and cover some more of my heroes in another post soon!

Anyhow, here they are – my top 5 favourite females:


5. Victoria Beckham

Clichéd? Yes. But I have a hell of a lot of time for this woman. As a kid I was often referred to as The Posh One because of my accent and being a city girl. Spice Girls taught me a lot of things, including the lesson that Posh isn’t negative. Her letter to her younger self published in Vogue really spoke to me, too. Her openness about her lack of confidence, self-image issues and knockbacks sounded a lot like the sorts of feelings I go through in cycles. To hear from someone as accomplished and beautiful as her gave me hope that one day I’ll get over my insecurities, too. She’s a cool, funny lady who adores her kids, creates clothes that are outta this world and she’s totally down to earth. Also her instagram is bangin.


4. Dame Stephanie “Steve” Shirley

If you haven’t already, you need to watch Dame Stephanie Shirley’s TED Talk. It’s hugely inspirational and motivational. (AND THAT SHIRT!!)

She reminds me that I can aim high and that I need to keep working hard to get to where I want to be. But that I should also have fun while I’m at it. Her life hasn’t been without its hardships, but she never let anything slow her, she only ever approached life in a positive manner and I admire her greatly for that alone. I’m really tempted to apply for a job under a male name to see what happens…


3. Malala Yousafzai

Unless you’ve been living in a hole these past few years, you’ll have heard of how incredible Malala is.

Published by the BBC at 11 on her experiences of living in Taliban-occupied Swat, nominated for the International Children’s Peace Prize by Desmond Tutu and nearly assassinated aged 14; Malala has literally been through the wars. She’s one of the most inspirational young women in the world. She’s a world-renowned education rights activist and was co-awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. She blows me away with her determination and passion for education. She more than qualifies as one of my fave females.


2. Michelle Obama

A woman who needs no introduction.

Former First Lady, mother, activist, fashion icon and incredible Mom Dancer, this lady doesn’t stop at glass ceilings – she smashes through them time and time again.

There’s also the fact that she can belt it out with James Corden in a car round the White House grounds and KILL IT.

Need I say more?


1. My Mum

Yes, it’s predictable. Yes, it’s true. Mummy Manda is my number one role model. Camera shy, passionate, emotional and the best listener I’ve ever known. Gardening mad, lover of a good smelling candle and sofa napper extraordinaire; she has taught me so much and still has more lessons to impart (not least in the kitchen). I know she’s always there at the end of the phone. Or the end of the road come next week. I love that woman with all my heart.

Mum, you are so incredibly special. Thank you for all your love and support, even when I didn’t really deserve it. I can’t wait to drink too much gin and never look at bubble wrap ever again with you.

Follow my blog with Bloglovin