Of all of the ludicrous body pressures loaded on women of late, the thigh gap surely has to take the biscuit (N.B. Don’t actually take the biscuit. Ever. It will stick to your thighs like garibaldi glue). The inane celebrity tweets and Instagram images boasting about the valley between said Z-lists’ femurs (slow clap to Maria Fowler), the countless “how to” Tumblrs devoted to the thigh cavity “cause” and moronic Twitter handles promoting the groin gullies of beautiful people (@CarasThighGap and @CalderThighGap to name but a few) have not only made the thigh gap “a thing”, but also given girls and women everywhere yet more body neurosis fodder.
Don’t stop at laser hair removal, control pants or bikini waxes - there’s a new impossible beauty paragon to aim for, and its presence (or lack thereof) is making itself known across global social media channels. Lucky then, that it’s crusaders of the worldwide web that are battling against it, and one such agitator is articulate vlogger Taylor Adele Smith, of ‘Feminist Make-Up Tutorial’ fame.
‘5 Ways to Fake a Thigh Gap’ is Taylor’s take on the prepubescent body trend. In this helpful and instructive YouTube lesson she guides the viewer through a series of thigh gap drills, proving that the thigh gap is quite literally open to everyone. Why not artfully balance a football between your legs? As Taylor highlights, your thighs will instantly separate, you’ll appear to be sporty and you can kick it in the face of any naysayer. The second step is delivered in classic deadpan Smith style:
“Find your nearest elevated object and settle your leg on that […] the higher your leg goes the more confident you’ll look.”
She’s dressed as Captain Morgan to aid demonstration. Don’t fancy either of these? “Crabwalk it out”. Hilarious and highly efficient, although as Taylor points out there are certain culinary drawbacks to the crustacean concept:
“Be careful to avoid chefs. You might be mistaken for an actual crab and end up in their next batch of chowder.”
She helpfully sets the scene by sitting in a plastic box labelled ‘crab’, looking glum. The animal theme is continued in strategy number four, where Taylor’s thigh gap programme gets prehistoric:
“Pop that booty back and stalk that prey like a velociraptor.”
If you’d like to take things a step further, then stage five is for you. This is thigh gap crisis point, the legally binding (separating) option if you’re at your wits end:
“Learn your right thigh’s handwriting and forge a restraining order against the left thigh. The left thigh, heartbroken, will leave, because it knows that’s what will make the right thigh happy. The right thigh, also heartbroken, will deny the legitimacy of the restraining order but it will be too late to mend the relationship that they once had.”
This final frontier of the thigh gap manifesto is accompanied by wistful scenes of single thighs standing forlornly in doorways before closing blinds and retreating into shadows. I challenge you not to get teary. With laughter.
As always, Taylor’s takedown of the abhorrent and for the most part genetically unfeasible obsession is both hilarious and of the moment. Fighting fire with fire in providing women, men and the entire planet with a “how really not to” guide is a direct hit back at the destructive pressure and scrutiny that women face.