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'Athletic Physique'... 'Bronze, Beachy Glow': College Cheerleader Tryout Checklist Pulled Over ‘Body Do’s’ and ‘Dont’s,’ Claims of Sexism, Racism


“As a student of color who looks nothing like the student in the poster, this feels very exclusive.”

A Washington Huskies cheerleader dances during a match against Texas Longhorns at the Mercedes Benz Arena in Shanghai, China, Saturday, Nov. 14, 2015. The University of Texas and University of Washington played the first-ever regular-season college men's basketball game in China at Shanghai's Mercedes Benz Arena, organized by the Pac-12 conference in partnership with Chinese tech giant Alibaba Group. (AP Photo/Ng Han Guan)

Female students at the University of Washington interested in becoming part of the cheer and dance team had an infographic at their disposal this week to ensure they put on the correct "tryout look."

There were "makeup do's" — "bronze, beachy glow" and "false lashes" and "girl about town lipstick" and "flattering eye shadow" — as well as some "don't's," such as "dark, smokey eyes" and "nude lips" and "too much makeup."

As for "body do's," contenders should sport a "physically fit, athletic physique" and have a "natural tan" (or at least a "spray tan"). "Body don't's," you ask? Hopefuls should avoid jewelry of any kind, visible tattoos and "distracting fingernail polish."

A "solid black sports bra" was considered among the attire "do's" while "tops that cover the midriff" were no-nos.

The instructions — as well as the depiction of a blonde-haired white woman — didn't sit well with many who caught a glimpse of the infographic after it was posted on Facebook by the school's cheerleading team Monday, the Seattle Times reported.

[sharequote align="center"]“I can’t believe this is real."[/sharequote]

"I can't believe this is real," UW student Jazmine Perez, director of programming for student government, told the paper in an email.

So, just days before Husky cheerleader tryouts, a backlash ensued on social media and the infographic was pulled Tuesday morning, the Times reported.

“One of the first things that comes to mind is objectification and idealization of Western beauty, which are values I would like to believe the University doesn’t want to perpetuate,” she added to the Times. “As a student of color who looks nothing like the student in the poster, this feels very exclusive.”

UW athletics officials told the paper in a statement that they created the infographic “in response to a high volume of student questions about cheer and dance team tryouts" and that it was removed after the department “determined that some of the details and descriptions provided were inconsistent with the values of the UW spirit program and department of athletics.”

The Times said the infographic was modeled after those posted by Washington State University and Louisiana State University.

“I think it’s really upsetting and kind of disheartening the way it’s basically asking these women who want to try out to perform their femininity — but not too much,” UW senior Signe Burchim told the paper, adding that men trying out for sports wouldn't have to deal with such things.

(H/T: Daily Mail)

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