Any plus size woman knows the weight of the rigid standards that society puts on beauty. Women are told that the easiest way to make themselves more appealing is to make their bodies less. Nowhere are these toxic ideas of body image harsher than in Hollywood, where anything over a size 2 “could sand to lose a little weight.” The shape and size of an actress’s body can severely impact her ability to find work. But even in a world as strict as Hollywood, there are beautiful plus size actresses who make the radical choice to love their bodies. Here’s what these 5 wonderfully curvy celebrities have to say about staying body positive, in Hollywood and in life in general:
“I never wanted to play a character that hated herself. I wanted people to know that those aren’t the only kind of roles for women like me, normal girls…I didn’t understand why people couldn’t accept me for who I was…I’m not gonna conform and hurt myself and do something crazy to be a size 2.” Before Amber Riley landed her lead role on the TV show Glee, she had all but given up on Hollywood. Too often, she received casting calls for “the girl who sits in the corner and, you know, eats all day” and felt depressed about her weight. Frustrated that these characters never seemed to have any confidence and never had a happy ending, Riley left Hollywood to finish school. She came back to play the confident powerhouse Mercedes Jones on Glee, which proved to be her breakout role.
“When you look in the mirror and say, ‘I’m ugly, I’m hideous, I’m fat,’ at the end of the day, you are going to become ugly or fat [in your eyes]…Honestly, we need to start treating ourselves a little bit better. That’s what I’ve done with the affirmation I say in my mirror.” It’s hard to believe that a stunning curvy Sports Illustrated model like Ashley Graham could have ever had insecurities about her body. But as she explained in an interview with Refinery 29 last year, she knows the impact that words can have on your body image…and some of the most damaging words are the words we say to ourselves. Graham makes a point to embrace her body and say something positive when she looks in the mirror every morning. She expresses body positivity with this daily affirmation.
“When I was younger, I was cognizant of being different and people made me feel that way. I had to cover up, and I always wore t-shirts around my friends. It’s a terrible thing, because size doesn’t, of course, equate to beauty…You might be bigger than the next person, but that doesn’t mean you’re not worthy or you’re lazy or whatever some people think plus-size is.” This has been a big year for Chrissy Metz. She was nominated for an Emmy for her role as Kate Pearson in This Is Us. In September, she was the keynote speaker for CurvyCon. Her success is well-earned, and it’s an encouragement to plus size aspiring actresses everywhere. But Chrissy is no stranger to feeling as though she had to cover up or make less of herself to fit societal standards. As a teenager, when she didn’t find trendy clothes that fit her, she learned to get creative and form her own style.
“Editors, we want to be seen. Designers, we want to be dressed. Retailers, we want options. Women, we must do this together.” Danielle Brooks is more than just the talented actress who plays Taystee on Orange is the New Black. She’s also a powerful writer, which she showed in her poignant essay about the lack of plus size representation, “I’m Tired of Not Seeing Women Like Me in the Media.” In it, she explains that not only do plus size women want to be seen, they deserve to be seen. She challenged clothes companies, fashion magazine editors, and curvy women themselves to represent the world the way it is: full of different shapes and sizes, each one as beautiful as the rest.
“When I grew up, I never heard positive reinforcement about body image from any female in my life. I only heard negatives. [That’s why] I stand in front of the mirror and say to Mia, ‘We are so lucky we have a shape. We’re so lucky we’re curvy. We’re so lucky that we’ve got good bums.’ And she’ll say, ‘Mummy, I know, thank God.’ It’s paying off.” Body positivity is important to Kate Winslet because it was so hard for her to find growing up. She’s known for giving interviews about body image and taking pride in her curvy shape. She also instills that same body positivity in her teenage daughter, Mia, so that Mia will never have to deal with the negative body image that she struggled with growing up.
At Fan C Designs, we believe in celebrating plus size women and their curvy figures. That’s why we’ve created our curvy brides selection just for plus size brides. No bride should have to trade style for comfort, but that’s what curvy brides are often asked to do when they search for wedding dresses. We offer a variety of beautiful dresses to fit now just your shape, but your style. Curves are nothing to be ashamed of, so embrace that body positivity today.