4 Things I Dislike About The Body Positive Movement

Hey curvy girls all over the world,

I know some of y’all came here to see if I was throwing shade at people because of the title. If you came here for the shade, unfortunately you won’t find it. What you will read is my true an honest opinions about the whole body positive movement. What the term body positive means to me and my personal ideas on how we can further advance the movement. There are some things I think the body positive movement SHOULDN’T only be about. After I list what they are, I will go into further detail as to why I feel this way. First, the body positive movement is not only about being plus size. Second, wearing a crop top or two piece swimsuit is not the only way to positively embrace your body. Third, the body positive movement should include men, women, boys, and girls of all ages. Fourth, being body positive should also wholly be about our true honest feelings about the skin we are in.

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1.The body positive movement is not just about being plus size

Brands like Lane Bryant have been doing some really amazing ground breaking campaigns to change the way society looks at plus size women. I can’t imagine anyone looking at their ads and not feeling inspired or at least saying, work those curves. Seeing Tess Holiday on the cover of People magazine had me pumping my fist in the air because you’ve rarely ever seen a woman over a size 20 on the cover of a mainstream magazine and not talking about being on a diet. However, you don’t have to be plus size to be part of the movement. I find that women who aren’t plus size, fat, or curvy struggle with body issues. Unfortunately, the media will have you believe that its only people who are overweight or obese that struggle with body image. I didn’t grow up plus size and I can remember having personal body issues just like any young girl.dove

People who are tall, short, thin, thick, fat, or chubby all have personal body issues. You can be a size 2 and think your thighs are humongous or your booty is not big enough. Dove’s Real Beauty Campaign is a wonderful example that women of all shapes and sizes can be part of the movement. The body positive movement should be promoting the same.

2. Wearing a crop top or two piece swimsuit is not the only way to positively embrace your body.

Whenever a plus size woman wears a crop top or two piece bikini, the internet goes nuts. I personally think the internet goes nuts with 50% of people saying kudo’s and the other 50% of people just can’t understand why a big girl would be comfortable enough with herself to do such a thing. To be honest, wearing a crop top or two piece when you don’t necessarily have the celebrated body type to do so can be liberating and a confidence booster, but that’s not the only thing you need to wear to obtain that type of freedom. You also don’t need to always strip down to your bra and undies and parade in the street to show you love your body. I’m not saying this to take away from anyone who does this or has done this, I’m just saying you should only do things like this if you’re truly comfortable.Riots-not-dietsWhen it comes to wearing clothes, being body positive is about you personally challenging yourself to get out of your comfort zone. You don’t have to follow the trends. You can take baby steps. Maybe you never thought you could pull off skinny jeans because you think your thighs are too big. Try a pair. If you’re truly not comfortable wearing a two piece bikini on a beach, find an uber sexy one piece or tankini. I’ve always felt that clothes are magical because when you find clothes that fit and flatter your body, your negative thoughts and mood about your body can instantly change to positive thoughts. Find clothes that make you feel and look good.

By all means, if wearing a crop top or two piece is the way for you to be body positive, then do your thing. If you need a little confidence boost on how you can stylishly boost how you feel about your body, you should follow our official hashtag #MyStylishCurves and model Essie Golden’s hashtag #GoldenConfidence.

3.The body positive movement should include men, women, boys, and girls of all ages.

underwear-for-perfect-men-dressmannPhoto Credit: Metro UK

Whenever we talk about anything body positive its almost always tailored toward women. The movement often forgets about men. Men should very much be part of the movement. You don’t always hear about it, but there have been. Last year, undwear brand Dressman did a campaign featuring men of all sizes and races in a campaign ad. The ad was all about promoting different male bodies in a positive way. They even did a video called underwear for perfect men.

Did you know there is a male body positive movement as well. Blogger Kelvin Davis started his blog Notoriously Dapper back in 2013 and has helped to give plus size men a voice in the blogging and fashion industry. Davis was also featured in the Aerie Man campaign which featured men of all shapes and sizes that aimed to promote body positive images for men and boys.56f441d5150000ad000b3209-1

4. Being body positive should also be about our true honest feelings about the skin we are in.

I think Amber Riley said it best in a recent interview with XO Necoleamber-riley_body-suit-768x1008

“There are a couple of problems that I have with the “Body Positive” movement and people behind it. I don’t believe that I have to love every single part of myself. There are things about myself that I have difficulty accepting, but it doesn’t mean that I hate myself. I love myself as a whole. There are things about myself that I have difficulty accepting because I know I need to get on the ball and get started. It has nothing to do with other people’s opinions. It has to do with me. It’s self-improvement and things that I feel I have to improve within myself. We can’t go around lying like, ‘I love myself more than you think and I don’t care,’ and blah blah blah. No.

Here’s why I’m here for Amber’s personal view. I think it’s super important for us to be honest about how we feel about our bodies. I’m quite sure and would put a little money on it that everyone is not 100% happy with their bodies. It’s only human for us to dislike certain parts. For me, I completely despise my cellulite. I have conversations with it, like why can’t you just go away. How many more squats and lunges do I need to do for you to disappear. I know it sounds crazy. However, although I dislike my cellulite I do try to do exercises to improve it. My point is, there are things you will not like about your body but its important to be able to acknowledge your dislikes and try to work on improving them. If you feel like you need to lose weight, work out more, eat healthier, its okay to say it and do so. It doesn’t mean you hate yourself or your body. The body positive preachers tend to not be realistic. Weight and body issues are a personal thing. We all have our struggles and everyday we should work on learning to stand in our truth.4 things I dislike about the body positive movement

Be careful on idolizing body positive leaders.

While we have some absolutely AMAZING body positive leaders and participants, you will be surprised how many people who are part of the movement and are only in it for the money and fame they can garner. A lot of these people truly have an unhealthy hate for their bodies. Some people waving the body positive flag are phonies and are using the movement to advance their careers or personal financial agenda’s. I promise you this is no shade. Even as a blogger, I’ve had to step back and take a look at myself and what I honestly stand for being part of the movement. For example, I believe in flattering my body when there are people in the movement who may believe flattering is not okay. We should wear whatever we want. I believe you should wear whatever you want but for me PERSONALLY, I’m going to wear whatever I want as long as it flatters me and makes me look and feel my best.

So, I would like to have a healthy and honest conversation about your thoughts on the direction of the body positive movement. Please feel free to leave a comment and tell me your thoughts. Do you agree with me ? If not, let me know why. 

 

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11 Stylish Comments on 4 Things I Dislike About The Body Positive Movement

  1. Style4Curves
    May 18, 2016 at 9:23 am (9 months ago)

    I agree I love myself as a whole but I am actively trying to exercise and eat better to improve the things I don’t like about myself because some of the things I don’t like I have the power to change. I also work in Healthcare and come face to face with the worst case scenarios that are weight/obesity related everyday and it definitely makes me want to change my lifestyle if not for vanity purposes just for Health. I agree we should include men, boys, and girls, and I also agree that we don’t have to get next to naked or parade around in bodycons everyday to display “confidence”. Some of the most insecure women of all sizes are the ones that are only comfortable when they are showing it all.

    Reply
  2. Joi @InMyJoi
    May 18, 2016 at 10:01 am (9 months ago)

    This was truly a refreshing read- so many points resonated with me. When it comes to body positivity, it has been a journey for me. For most of my life I’ve worn a size 12-16 (pear shape) and I felt very insecure. It seemed like everyone was so much smaller than me, or didn’t have my body type/shape/size. Their comments and opinions fueled my constant need to lose weight. However, when I hit my 30’s my thinking began to shift, and I found that I was no longer as impressionable in reference to my body as I had been before. I realized that I might always be this exact same size, as a matter of fact, it was a waste of time to loathe myself another day. Being curvy and plus size needn’t stop me from wearing clothing that I liked and or styling myself according to my authenticity. That realization felt like a burden had been lifted, and I had finally given myself permission to be shapely, thick thighs and all. For me body positivity means loving myself, the skin I am in, and all of the imperfections that I see when I look in the mirror a la nude. Instead of turning away from my reflection as I had done for years, I now feel comfortable looking at/examining my own body, and I like it. The cellulite is still there, as are the stretch marks, and other flaws- but I’ve learned to see them in a more different light. Like Amber said, there I still things that I would prefer looked differently, but I no longer loathe them. I now cherish them. I step outside of my comfort zone and wear cuts of clothing that I previously thought were solely for small people. However, I always aim to look my personal best- and I will never be interested in wearing anything and everything for the sake of any movement. Body positivity for me is a personal journey. I am happy to share what I’ve learned thus far with others, perhaps just one person might learn to love their body (flaws & all) earlier in life, versus later.

    Reply
  3. yona
    May 18, 2016 at 1:20 pm (9 months ago)

    lOVE LOVE LOVE !

    Reply
  4. Christian Simone
    May 18, 2016 at 1:32 pm (9 months ago)

    Being a plus fitness blogger I really do believe a lot of the movement is a lot of fluff no pun intended. I believe most really do believe that one should love themselves as is. But I do believe others are seen as cute fat thus they have been elevated for this movement. I adore being who I am at the current, but I also want to be my best me. I do believe a lot of the movement is for certain demographics vs others. I really hope the message doesn’t get lost in the foolishness.

    Reply
  5. Trish @ The Trish List
    May 18, 2016 at 4:40 pm (9 months ago)

    I absolutely agree with all of your points. As a society we need to accept ourselves first and then deal with everything else. Once we feel comfortable in our own skin we can do so much more. The thing I agree with most here is dressing to flatter your own body. Best advice anyone has ever given me when clothes shopping.

    Reply
  6. Chardline
    May 18, 2016 at 10:06 pm (9 months ago)

    Thank you for going against the grain on this one! I’ve had people tell me I wasn’t body positive because I did a post on a girdle! It’s crazy! Certain ethnicities come with certain privilege. I digress, beautifully written.

    Reply
  7. The Curvy Coalition
    May 19, 2016 at 5:17 am (9 months ago)

    This was such a great read. I’ve been seeing a lot of people become part of the body positive movement just for financial gain lately and it’s pretty disheartening. Thank you for putting things into perspective.

    Reply
  8. Lady B
    May 19, 2016 at 9:17 am (9 months ago)

    I’m sorry I have to disagree. No offense. When you create a movement that’s trying to eradicate things that are oppressive and discriminatory, you don’t include people or things that benefit from the oppression.

    It’s like including racists in the fight for equality. I’m going to be honest, when I see posts like these it normally comes from a place of people who prioritize societal conformity.

    A lot of plus size people almost guilt ourselves for being body posi or loving themselves because it’s so taboo to exist and be fat and happy. This is why we constantly have to say “I’m not doing it for myself I’m doing it for me” because in reality we are not doing it for ourselves we’re doing it for the gaze of a society that absolutely hates non-conforming unconventional beauty.

    As a size activist it’s really frustrating that this is the only movement with so much drama within it, but it also proves how horrible society has been regarding the placement of beauty standards and acceptance of fat bodies.

    The fact of the matter is fat shaming and body image issues solely target fat women or women of a larger size.

    Thinner/smaller bodies are more promoted and privileged in a society that glorifies thinness as something to reward.

    And maybe, just maybe it’s logical to not want to support things that hide or cover bodies that do not conform because that’s the point of the movement.

    Posts like these are very triggering to me because it’s so hard to find plus size spaces, especially black plus size spaces that doesn’t center around being inclusive or weight loss. It just ignites everything all over again.

    I might have to stop following for my own sanity.

    Reply
    • alissa
      May 19, 2016 at 7:21 pm (9 months ago)

      Hi Lady B,

      Thank you for your comment and your opinion. It is truly appreciated. I wrote the post to open a dialogue about it because so many people are afraid to disagree with things that are going on with the movement. I asked for everyone’s opinion because I like hearing other people’s points of view. It’s truly okay to disagree.

      I understand your point and you’re absolutely right about plus size women always being the ones targeted. I don’t disagree with that. My point is simply saying that as the movement grows, it should go into a direction that is more inclusive. Drama within a movement happens when everyone in the movement is not on the same page. When I see young little girls and men being fat shamed, who stands up for them? The second point is that there is no one way to be body positive. I think that needs to be expressed because right now, all we see in the movement is crop tops and two pieces as a way to be body positive. I think its time to graduate from that.

      I have always utilized this blog as a safe place so I am unsure as to why you would have to unfollow for your sanity. I have always promoted different ways to celebrate your body. I’ve done numerous posts on wearing crop tops and fatkini’s I’ve done articles on how to learn to love your body, and I’ve even promoted body positive events, and shared the success of some of the body positive leaders.

      I would hate to lose a follower but I do understand. At the end of the day, we should be able to agree to disagree.

      Reply
  9. Catherine Schuller
    May 19, 2016 at 10:08 pm (9 months ago)

    Thanks for the realistic and balanced spin. As a plus size model in the 80s I’ve seen it all and been through all the comments both good and bad about my size. Now that I’m on the other side of 50, we are truly the forgotten woman. Age is the last hurdle we must tackle. It’s like they are saying that only young fat is sexy. The need for appropriate garb is super important because it can really be a major faux pas to appear too body conscious at a ripe age. I know no one is tackling this issue. There are no older women in these plus size shows. And that’s a damn shame cause we have the money to spend on looking good!

    Reply
  10. Fatima
    January 18, 2017 at 9:34 pm (1 month ago)

    Wow- you make many valid points. Just another way of viewing but also including everyone in the Positive Body Image Movement. I’m sure your headline will cause heads to turn and say #controversy or #blaspheme but reading it through you make good points.

    Reply

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