When I was in high school, I was pretty thin – thin enough to be considered the “skinny” friend or, you know, thin enough to look pregnant after eating a sandwich. And because skinny privilege is a thing – girls are constantly being told that skinny is good and fat is bad – I never thought much about my body. I didn’t really start to develop body image issues until later on, when I got a bit older and put on some weight (hello hormones, autoimmune disorder, and a nasty case of carb addiction!). As my weight changed, my sense of my body changed.
Suddenly I was in someone else’s body – it was like it wasn’t even mine. I won’t lie and say that it was easy to suddenly adjust to a new weight. I had to reframe what it meant to be looked at by society as “curvy” and I definitely needed to figure out my next steps after realizing H&M’s larger jeans were more like socks that wouldn’t go past my thigh. Then I had to stop people from saying dumb things like, “You look great for your weight.“ (Um, okay?!) In the end, I realized that there is so much more to who we are than our bodies. That sounds corny, but it’s true, and it’s what ultimately led to me accepting myself and learning to love being a size 12.
You don’t have to love your body 100 percent of the time, but you should actively try to accept it for what it is. For me, that means embracing my larger size (i.e. larger than younger me). I want you to embrace yours too, because honestly, it feels awesome, so here are a few reasons I love being a size 12. Also, let’s not sit here and pretend I’m going to say no to any form of liquid or solid carbohydrate! Because that’s just not happening anytime soon.
1) Size 12 is just a label
Numbers are kind of random, aren’t they? If you’re short and hold all your weight in your butt, it’s going to be a different kind of size 12 from someone who is super tall, muscular, and top-heavy. For me, at 160 pounds and 5’8, my weight is pretty equally distributed. And guess what? I love it. I realize that a number is just a number – and there’s no way a number could encompass all of me.
2) I’m showing people that healthy doesn’t always equal tiny.
Oh hey, guess what? I’m a size 12, and I’m still totally active. I’m still healthy. I love to dance and I can play Zumba World Fitness (in my living room, all alone) like a pro (but don’t tell anyone). Being size 12 doesn’t mean I’m not healthy. And it doesn’t mean that for you, either.
3) Size 12 girls are total rebels
Last time I checked, I was in charge of my body – and you are in charge of yours. Anyone else who feels that they have some crazy right to comment on or insult your body or my body or that girl over there’s body – well – they very clearly didn’t get the memo. You do you. Own it. Rock it. Love it. And by learning to ignore the ignorant voices out there, you put yourself first. You take a stand – metaphorically and literally – against body shaming. By existing in my size 12 body, I’m saying, “nope!” to a society that wants to control girls and tell us how we should look. And what’s more rad than a rebel?
4) Curves are really fun, and more than just boobs and butts.
☀️ wow I can't believe I just shot the new campaign completely makeup free, now that's real? I would have been so self conscious a few years ago… Seriously can't wait to share with you? also I don't know if you girlies ever watched it but I made a vid on @therunwayriot about what hair products I use inc @mrsmithhair @kerastaseusa to watch ?click the link in my bio? big s/o to my hairdresser @arturnewyork can't wait to see you in a couple of weeks?✨❤️ oh and outfit dets top by @aerie and jeans @fashionnova ? #iskralawrence #everyBODYisbeautiful
Beyond being a total badass social rebel, being curvy is fun. And I don’t just mean big boobs. I mean the whole package. A soft tummy, big thighs, wide hips – all of it. Curves feels super sexy in a dress. And they’re hot in a bikini. This doesn’t mean that our skinny friends aren’t gorgeous too. In fact, we’re all doing just great. The point is, all body types can be fun, if you’re looking at them the right way.
5) Curvy girls have been a symbol of femininity for millennia.
Again, I’m not trying to put skinny girls down – you guys are beautiful too! But I am trying to shine a spotlight on being on the thicker side. Curvy women are beloved, no matter what sort of trends come and go year after year. The lady with the thick thighs and the round butt just so happens to be the lady whose bust or statue stands at the entrance of your local museum. History loves curvy women (just ask your history teacher!).
6) Size 12 is becoming the new norm.
The thing is, I know that me and my curves aren’t alone. Did you know that most women are actually considered plus-size? That’s because most ladies aren’t size two or even size four or six – even when we’re super young and our metabolisms are insanely fast. With more and more awesome, cool, gorgeous women in fashion and beauty, we’re seeing more representations of ourselves in media. This feels good and it’s awesome for everyone else because it takes the strain off of girls who feel like they need to starve themselves or engage in unhealthy behavior to achieve an ideal look. We’re part of a movement, just by existing. And I think that’s pretty cool.
7) Being “plus size” brings about a loving community.
Because we’re not alone, being size 12 sort of comes with a built in community. Girls who are a little larger (than straight sizes) tend to share great fashion secrets with each other. From my friends – and from great curvy girl blogs or Instagram accounts – I’ve learned all about great websites and shops that cater to us Jessica Rabbit types…and it’s sort of like a bonding experience – except with cute clothes.
8) I get to be super creative with my wardrobe.
The best thing about being a size 12, for me, is figuring out where I’m going to get super cute clothes and which clothes best accent our glorious curves. This doesn’t have to be a drain. Look at it like a welcome challenge. Sure, Forever 21 and Zara have some cute options – but everything is ready to wear (and therefore sort of boring). Sure, it’s hard to find size 12 pleather pants there that aren’t straight-up Camel Toe City (#TheStruggleIsReal), but that’s why we get the chance to figure out really cool outfit pieces that make a unique statement. Bigger clothes don’t have to be ugly clothes. Let this challenge inspire you to get more creative with your look.
What’s your size? What do you love about your body?