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  • Writer's pictureLaura Day

I'm not a Roxy Girl, but I am a Surfer

Updated: Mar 16, 2022

Have you ever felt misrepresented by the surf industry as a woman who surfs?

I have and I often still do! In fact, feeling misrepresented as a female surfer was the inspiration to start our surf wear line: iaera surf . At iaera surf we create surf wear for the uniqueness and beauty of every woman, not just one industry standard.

Confessions of a Surf lady is a space for us to extend the conversation beyond the products we carry into a platform that can better represent you: the everyday female surfer.

Here, we take your anonymous confessions about surf lady topics and discuss them openly on our episodes.

How do you feel about the way women are represented in the surf industry?

On episode 2 we discuss how we feel about the way women are represented in the surf industry with guest Vanessa Yeager.

Vanessa is a community creator, founder & moderator of the largest female surf group in the world: Women Who Surf.

Here are some surf lady confessions to:

How do you feel about the way women are represented in the surf industry?

Submitted anonymously:

"Women are often portrayed on the beach, holding a surfboard and in a tiny bikini, it can send the wrong message that women are not equal in the water to men and may not be taken seriously when in the lineup."

Submitted anonymously:

"Things are getting a little better, but we still have a long way to go. I follow a lot of brands and surfers on social media, and I still see way too many girls featured with more skin than shredding. This translates into the clothing the rest of us are expected to fit in."

Submitted by Vanessa Yeager

"It's come a long way and there's been positive changes. I'm seeing a lot more women out there that are different shapes and sizes, different cultural backgrounds. We're moving in a forward, positive direction and it's just cool to see. I'm glad that it's happening in my lifetime."

We have such a long way to go as female surfers, but as Vanessa Yeager says in Episode 02, "It's an amazing time to be a woman who surfs!"

Let's continue in this positive, forward direction and do our best to create a truer, more authentic representation of the female surfer.

Here are 5 ways we can authentically represent ourselves as women who surf:

1. Recognize that images from the surf industry are not a true representation of the female surfer.

The surf industry creates images to sell the idea of the cool surfer lifestyle, this is how large brands like Billabong, Roxy & Quicksilver create mass appeal with their customer base. Authentically representing women who surf is not their goal. Knowing this gives us freedom from comparing ourselves to their images. Anyways, Women who surf vs. images of women from the surf industry are like comparing apples to photoshopped oranges.

2. Move your dollars and purchases to women owned brands who's values align with yours.

When you spend your dollars in alignment with your values, you empower communities that have the same ethics an ethos you believe in. Instead of shopping big surf brands, support women owned and operated brands like iaera surf, her waves or hakuna wear. By supporting smaller brands you empower the women's surf community and give them the financial resources to create a more authentic representation of women who surf. This is marketing and visual representation that you can relate to and feel good supporting!

3. Tell your authentic story, be vulnerable and open with your experiences as a surf lady

Telling your authentic story can not only feel empowering but it gives other surf ladies a chance to relate to your experiences. By being open and honest you create an opportunity for connection, understanding and community. Don't be afraid to share your thoughts as a woman in the lineup! Your story could be empowering other women and eye-opening to men who are unaware of what it's like to be female in the lineup.

4. Participate in your community

Joining supportive groups like the Women Who Surf Facebook group or meet-ups in your area are a great place to meet other women. By being a part of a community you'll see how much diversity there is within women's surfing and feel more empowered to be your authentic self!

5. Be open to other people's experiences that may be different from yours.

Celebrating other people's opinions and experiences is a part of giving yourself permission to show up authentically. Listen with an open mind when a surf sister is sharing her story and learn from her experiences even if they are completely different from yours.

This post was inspired by a conversation with Vanessa Yeager in

S1EP02 of Confessions of a Surf Lady: How women are represented in the surf industry.

For more inspiring surf lady content listen to the episode below or on all major podcast platforms.


Confessions of a Surf Lady Podcast is brought to you by The Surf Société.

Step Up Your Surf Game

The Surf Société is our online women's surf community dedicated to empowering women in the lineup through progressing our surf skills, building confidence, and pushing ourselves in challenging surf conditions.

Won't you join us?

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