Almost every week, you can find something published in relation to the current body positive movement, i.e. ‘body positivity.’ I often share articles that I come across on the topic over on my Tumblr blog. A major goal of this movement is the long-awaited equalization between women who wear plus sizes and those who wear so-called ‘regular sizes.’ For decades women who wore larger sizes have felt like they were being treated and/or projected in an inferior way to their smaller-sized peers. Why? First, it was virtually impossible to find fashionable clothing in double digit sizes. Secondly, the lack of equal visible visual representation in mainstream media and retail advertising strategies was a source of contention.
Thankfully things are shifting. However, it has been notably observed that some of the women who have been invited to represent the body positive movement don’t technically wear plus sized clothing. Additionally, they may not identify with the current growing online community of plus sized women. Reflecting on this raises some questions…Is the body positive movement limited only to women who wear plus sized clothing? If so, must it always remain that way? If the answer is ‘yes,’ why?
I view body positivity as a journey of self-acceptance. For most of my life I’ve worn a size 14, read more here. I felt insecure because of my size and body type. Once I hit my 30’s however, my world changed. More specifically: My thinking changed. I found that I was no longer impressionable, especially in reference to my body. I realized that I might always be this exact same size. It would be a waste of time and energy to loathe my body another day. Being curvy and plus size needn’t limit me from wearing clothing that I like or styling myself according to who I am. That realization felt like a burden had been lifted off of me, I had finally given myself permission to be shapely, to be ME.
In my head, being body-positive means actively and consciously loving all of my physical attributes. Instead of turning away from my own reflection in the mirror as I had done for years, I now feel comfortable looking at my own body; I’ll let you in on a secret: I like it. Sure, I have cellulite, stretch marks, and other authentic touches, but I’ve taught myself to view them positively. Of course there are physical things about myself that I wish I could change. However, I no longer loathe them. I excitedly step outside of my comfort zone and wear cuts of clothing that I previously considered solely for smaller bodies. However, with that being said: I always aim to look my personal best, read more here. I will never be interested in wearing anything and or everything for the sake of a movement.
When I truly think about what the body positive movement means to me, I can certainly see how all of us may struggle with issues about ourselves, regardless of what size clothing we wear. I’m curious, what does body positivity mean to you? Do you think that it should expand and include all sizes and genders? I look forward to reading your thoughts!
I’m Joi and I blog my personal style via In My Joi. I’ve always enjoyed dressing up, yet notably, my personal style took on new dimensions when I hit my 30’s. You’ll find me saturated in bright colors, draped in vintage, and topped in hats. Occasionally I venture off to black and white combinations or take a playful dabble in mixed prints. It has been said that style is a way to express who you are, without having to speak. I wholeheartedly concur. Each day of life offers up a blank canvas, a fresh opportunity to use style to express different dimensions of my authentic self. Join my style adventures via Instagram, Tumblr, Twitter, or Facebook!