Jessica Cheesman - 24 years old - www.goldenswank.com

Outgoing, inviting, hard-working, stunning, sophisticated.

When do you feel most beautiful?

When my husband tells me I am.

Has becoming a blogger affected the amount you think about your appearance? If yes, how so?

Definitely! As a blogger, you have to stay ahead of the latest trends, whether it relates to apparel, makeup, skincare, hair, etc. I feel like I am constantly searching for new ways to improve my appearance, which consequently leads to spending much longer getting ready than I used to before I started blogging.

How much do you think your success as a blogger is tied to your physical appearance?

In my opinion, the majority of being a successful blogger is tied to physical appearance. I’ll be the first to admit that fashion blogging is a very petty thing. That doesn’t make me love it any less though. (You can take that however you want.) But as sad as this seems, if your physical appearance is not up to par, chances of being a successful blogger are not that high. Women look at bloggers to be inspired by them. Who is inspired by someone who isn’t put together or offering something new and interesting? I’m certainly not. I think this is where the stigma that bloggers have “perfect lives” comes from. We’re all trying to keep up with each other and often times, I find myself planning out my next Instagram post or mulling over which photos to post for my next outfit post.

Have you ever struggled with a lack of confidence? If so, how did you get through it?

Of course! I know this seems ridiculous but I have always been self-conscious about my weight. I went through a chunky phase in high school and am still working toward reaching my goals. I felt like everyone around me was so much thinner than me and I found myself constantly comparing myself to others. Fortunately, I now work for a weight loss/health company right now and I have learned so much about health and nutrition. I still struggle with this and am not the most confident but I am learning to love my body, stretch marks and all.

What are 5 things you love about yourself?

My ability to be friends with almost anyone
My lips
My hint of freckles that you can only really see when I’m not wearing makeup
My hair
My sarcasm

What made you want to be a part of The Stripped Project?

I am always supportive of empowering people, and at first I was hesitant to display myself so vulnerably. But when I thought about it, I knew it would help so many women feel more confident about their bodies. There’s nothing more encouraging than seeing women you look up to showcase how their just normal people like you and I.

How did you feel being in front of the camera with no make-up on?

I was really nervous at first, especially since I had a breakout on my face earlier that week. (It was one of those huge, deep, red guys. You know the drill.) But as soon as I accepted that the alien on my face wasn’t going anywhere, I just went with it and felt comfortable with it.

How do you maintain positive self-esteem while being involved in social media?

I try to always comment back to everyone on my blog and Instagram so that they feel validated. Similarly, I try to comment genuine things on other people’s photos so that they know how great they are. Spreading positively on social media is so important, especially when you consider all the cyber bullies out there. Having a blog definitely puts you in the spotlight and sadly, I have been attacked on social media before. Trust me, it is one of the worst feelings. It’s crazy how negativity from mere strangers can affect you, so always spread positively.

Have you ever felt pressure to look and act a certain way on social media?

Yes. As I mentioned earlier, I often find myself planning out Instagram photos and retaking the same shot about 28 times to get the perfect photo. It’s mega embarrassing that I do that. On the other hand, I feel like I always post candid thoughts to maintain a genuine voice on my blog so at least that aspect of my life isn’t staged. ;)