In recent years, tabloid newspaper The Sun has come under fire for displaying images of topless women, with many believing such photographs are sexist and outdated.
Regardless, this year The Sun’s Bust In Britain competition is back. The contest aims to find Britain’s next “Cleavage Queen”, with the winner receiving £5,000 and a photo shoot in Ibiza.
Jasmine McCloude won Bust In Britain 2017. She says the contest transformed her life, calling it “the best thing that ever happened to me”.
But not everyone is convinced.
Level Up, a UK-based feminist group founded in 2018, think that holding such a contest in 2018 is wrong.
Carys Afoko, executive director at Level Up, said:
When I spotted Bust in Britain on page 3 of The Sun my heart sank. The Sun has such an old-fashioned idea of beauty: if you aren’t a skinny, white woman with big boobs you don’t make the grade.
With this in mind, the group has launched a campaign to turn the competition on its head by encouraging men and non-binary people to enter.
The rules for Bust in Britain don’t stop men and non-binary people from entering the contest, so we’re encouraging people from all walks of life to submit selfies. Let’s bring The Sun’s competition into the 21st century.
All chests are beautiful. The Sun should encourage everyone to feel positive about their bodies.
Here are some of the best entries, with reactions from the participants.
Bilal, 32, Harrow.
I want to see more Asian men representing as strong role models in society.
Johnny, 28, Suffolk.
Bust in Britain is a sexist competition. Also this year my New Years resolution was to take more naked photos of myself.
Noah, 30, Bristol.
My mum thought it would be great to enter the competition as she has always been proud of and a huge supporter of my fabulous moobs.
Farook, 32, Walthamstow.
This is about feeling good about oneself, regardless of gender, race, class or any other dividing label and showing it!