I’ve dealt with my body image my whole life. I was bullied in elementary school for being on the chubby side, but lost the baby weight during 5th grade. You would think I would’ve been ecstatic that now I lost the baby fat and had the “perfect” body, right? Wrong. I’ve always felt ashamed of my clothing size; I was always the one that was the biggest size in my class, unable to raid my friends’ closets because I was fitting into size medium tops and size 5 jeans at 12 years old while my friends were barely entering womanhood. Eleven years later and the stigma of being the biggest size still exist, feeling like a plus in a minus world, especially in the blogging world. Even though the world of blogging is not the world of modeling, let’s be real: bloggers are put into either a “normal” or “plus” sizes spectrum, but what about the ones in between, the ones like me? I’m not a size 0 but I’m not a size 18, so where do I fit in? I’m not going to lie, it’s very hard to not look at my body sometimes and say, “Why do I look like this? Why can’t I be a smaller size? Why can’t I look as good in a bathing suit or dress or top as other bloggers? Am I not good enough for brands to work with me?”…
As a person whose job involves constantly modeling my body to the world, I’ve come to a realization: I am aware of the fact that I cannot fit into most of my blogger friends’ clothes. I am aware of the stretch marks I have because I either lose or gain weight all the time. I am aware of the fact that I’m not skinny nor plus size. I am ME. I am my own definition of beauty, with flaws and all. I am my own representation of what body image should be: confident in my own skin, happy that God gave me the body that I am in and not try my best to change it to fit “society’s beauty standards.” I don’t want to follow society’s body standards nor should Y O U. Why can’t we choose our definition of body standards and decide how to treat our bodies without the influence of social media, celebrities or influencers? Don’t be on a diet because your family tells you “you need to lose a couple of pounds” or start doing exercise because you want to be able to fit into your “skinny” friend’s closet, but do it for YOURSELF. It took me 23 years to finally look in the mirror and not feel ashamed of my body, not feel guilty because I have some “extra pounds” in me, not close my eyes and wish I was thirty pounds skinnier. If you’ve struggled with body image or you’ve felt ashamed or embarrassed about your body, look in the mirror and accept your flaws. List the things you love about yourself. Get inspired by models that are breaking stereotypes of what a model should look like by accepting their bodies, such as Ashley Graham or Iskra. Aspire to be the best version of YOURSELF for YOURSELF. As someone that has struggled with her body image all her life, I can sincerely tell you, you will take a weight off your shoulders once you accept the wonderful skin you’re in. We’re all beautifully made, wonderfully made, differently made and THAT’S OK. I’ve learned that everyone, yes EVERY ONE (even “body goals” like Kylie Jenner) deals with insecurities and negative body images because we’re not supposed to be conformed in our skin, but change our bodies to look a certain way to please everyone except ourselves. I say HELL NO. Celebrate the skin you’re in and others around you. Compliment yourself and others. But most importantly, LOVE YOURSELF. If not, who will?
Author: Gabriela Torres
Author Bio: My name is Gabriela Torres, the blogger behind She Wears Color! I’m a style + travel blogger that uses my platform to empower women by positive and encouraging words.
Link to social media: http://www.instagram.com/shewearscolor