I spent so many years loving my body but thinking it wasn’t lovable by others- its sole purpose was to be fodder for jokes. I performed the insult so no one else could. I don’t regret any of it- that’s my art and that was my truth- but now, at age 31, having been through hell and back with my health and other people’s perceptions of my physicality, I feel deeply comfortable with the idea that this pear-shaped pot of honey is equally good for making people laugh and laying out like a Suicide Girl circa 2004. Love it all.
Because I’m honest about my insecurities, people think I’m 100 percent positive about my body all the time, but I’m not. I get really uncomfortable, too. But I just remind myself that this is the body I was given. This is who I am.
On getting a breast reduction:
When I got the breast reduction it helped me feel so much better about my body. I used to have full-scale meltdowns in bathing suit shops because there was nothing I could find to wear. I always felt like crap about myself. My best friend, she’s super tall and skinny and she’ll wear the same bathing suit as me, but people will automatically look at me and call me out as a s**t or write headlines about “Ariel Winter’s cleavage. Meanwhile they look at her like, “Oh she looks so cute!” But I’ve learned to not care about that as much. I’m comfortable in a bathing suit, scars and all.
On being criticized:
I went through a lot of hate online, so I tried to change myself for a really long time. But people just kept hating on me no matter what I did. I decided that instead of pleasing these other people, I’ll just spend that time pleasing myself. Those people are going to be rude to me regardless of what I do, so I should just try and be happy with what I am.
On wearing makeup at the beach:
I’m definitely a makeup at the beach person, and I don’t care if people think I look ridiculous — it’s my beach day! Whether I want to go natural or with makeup or in sweatpants, that’s up to me. People are so stressed out about how they’re going to look in their bathing suits that they forget to go to the beach because they want to go to the beach, which defeats the purpose. The beach should be a safe space.
As a model, people are telling you you’re beautiful, and at school, people are telling you you’re ugly. They would say, ‘You’re not really a model, you’re a fat model.’ It was humiliating. I think I just put my head down and internalised it’.
On her body positive message:
I still wake up some mornings and feel fat, of course I do, but I’ve come to a place where I’m like, the cellulite’s not leaving, and I’m not going to beat myself up about it, I’ll embrace it. Some women say, ‘I can’t get out of bed, I’m never going to find a man, or get that job that I want, because of the way I look’. I love my body. When I look in the mirror, I see a woman who is strong and ambitious, satisfied with who she is. ‘I’ve been told I’m a pioneer and a trailblazer, that I changed the game, but to me, I’m just a model who happens to know how to talk to women about loving the skin they’re in. I’m trying to convey that confidence and feeling sexy is about being comfortable with who you are.
On why she can’t diet:
I’m simply not able to adhere to strict rules around deprivation. I get upset, ‘hangry’, when I’m not eating. I would never go on a major diet and work-out spree just to be thin.
On feeling left out a a plus-size woman:
It’s ugly that there aren’t enough clothes in stores for women that go up to a size 22 or 24. As a curvy girl you get the feeling you’re a second-class citizen. I want women to accept themselves. I have so many friends, skinny, really heavy and in between, who all have the same insecurities.
Dove recently launched their new collection of body washes based on different body shapes, with the aim of sending the message that every shape is beautiful.
The official statement from Dove:
Every woman’s version of beauty is different and, if you ask us, these differences are there to be celebrated. That’s what real beauty is all about – the unique things that set us apart from each other and make us one of a kind. We’ve championed this version of beauty for the past 60 years, and celebrated diverse women in our groundbreaking real beauty campaigns. But we wanted to bring this to life through our products, too. That’s why we’ve created a limited edition range of Dove Body Washes, designed to show how beauty is diverse and diversity is beautiful.
What do you think of this concept?
Here are some reactions from Twitter:
Watch the commercial below, then share your thoughts:
I’m very human about that. There was just a woman who showed her reverse transformation, going from a size 6 to a size 16 and how empowered she feels. Honestly, that’s totally great for those women. I don’t have those feelings about the “imperfections” of my body at all. I understand there are some women who love to show off their cellulite and stretch marks; I don’t feel empowered by that. I think that’s going to vary, and I think both things need to be OK. I don’t feel shamed. I grew up with a very different standard of beauty and attractiveness, as did many women my age. It takes a lot of adjusting for some of us to get used to this notion that all of a sudden things women were teased for and hated for I’m now supposed to flaunt. It’s just not how my brain’s going to work, but I think both things can be OK.