We’ve heard it before. We’ve experienced it ourselves. Social media opens up doors for comparison. Whether we compare ourselves to our friends and family, celebrities, or that girl you used to go to school with and for whatever reason still happen to follow.
Oftentimes these comparisons can be harmful to our emotional selves. Especially when it comes to our self esteem and body image. Growing up, I know I would have benefited from having more diversity in the media that I consumed. It would have given me someone to relate to, someone to tell me that it was okay to look how I did. It was impossible for me to look like the beautiful and stunning models that I was bombarded by. It was possible for me to look like myself and be beautiful and stunning, but I did not know that at the time. Which is why body positive influencers are so important. If I could have been surrounded by people who told me it was not only okay, but it was completely healthy and normal to look how I did, then I could have been saved from years’ worth of damage.
So, I’ve decided to start a blog post series in which I highlight my favorite body positive instagrammers. First up, is Kenzie.
Kenzie posts a mix of texts-based images and physical body-based images. Her account is marketed on a personal level, as opposed to being branded as a bigger body-positive company and media publication. She is extremely open about her own struggles and consistently writes powerful and motivating captions.
So remember how I told you guys when I was younger I used to collage from magazines? And they would be all body parts that I wanted and didn't have. (And could never have because of photoshop!!!!) Last year I went through a conventional fashion magazine and here is what I found: 〰 There were 236 pages. • Which meant there were 237 opportunities for me to see myself, a body similar to mine or my friends. (Do you want a spoiler alert here? Lolol) • 70 pages were dedicated to women size 00-2 (and then photoshopped to look even smaller) these pages were not article based, so they were adverts. • 15 pages consisted of WoC • 2 WOMEN (NOT PAGES) were above a size 6. • 1 single woman who was visibly above 35 years old. 〰 It's not impossibly difficult to see why women have so much angst among themselves, we have narrowed the standards of what we believe to be beautiful so finely that even the ones who fit in the category are nervous wrecks that they'll fall off the podium. ✨ please know that you don't have to fit into the standard the media holds for you, your body the one that looks the opposite of what you see IS SUPPOSED TO LOOK LIKE THAT. ✨ If you need to hear this, I give you permission to be yourself today and say "yah that's fucked up, I don't need the unrealistic pressures of that." Diversity. DIVERSITY. DIVERSITYYYY. I want you all in the next 5 years to be able to see yourselves the media. 👏 It doesn't start or stop with me either! 👏 (📸 by @sophiesahara) #medialiteracy #OWNIT #loveyourself #loveyourbody #womensupportingwomen #bodyimage #bodyshape #girlgang
⬆️⬆️⬆️ I just spent the most incredible night watching an amazing doc on body image. It's called @straightcurvefilm ☑️ 〰 91% of women don't like how they look. NINETY ONE PERCENT. 〰 People who have poor body image don't seek "healthy" ways to deal with them. They don't do mirror affirmations or seek mental health care or talk to their friends about it, the majority result in an extreme diet (which as we all know fails at the end leaving a person with more gutted shame.) 〰 Statistically speaking when some brings home a woman partner people ask "what does she look like?" When a person brings home a man partner the question people ask "what does he DO?" !!!!!!!!!! THAT IS A PROBLEM. WE ARE OBSESSED WITH HOW WOMEN LOOK AND WERE DROWNING IN IT. 〰 Please know that you are perfect the way you are right now, you DO NOT NEED TO DO ANYTHING ELSE. YOU CAN EXIST HOW YOU ARE. YOU CAN: •play sports •dance •read •write about politics •cook really tasty homemade food •become a scientist •own a restaurant •make policy changes •travel the world •blog about everything •create a community in your hometown •literally anything and your body doesn't have to stop you from doing ANY OF IT. #loveyou #bodyimage #bodyimageissues #letschangethis
YALLLLL!!!!!! THIS AMAZING BABE BOUGHT HER FIRST BATHING SUIT. FIRST. EVER. Can we please show her some love?! Go to her page for her full caption, so beyond proud of her!!!!!!!!! I went through all her posts and immediately pressed follow. When you just feel a friend through their posts, you just KNOW 💙 I remember when I bought my first bathing suit, which I took NO pictures in last year (I have a new one coming in the mail!) I was just so scared!!!!!!! Incredibly proud of you @thefriendineverwanted 😍😍😍🎉🎉🎉 You are such a badass warrior ❤️❤️❤️ #bodylove #nobodyshame #girlgang
I remember when I first heard the phrase "you are more than just a body." I heard it from my beautiful friend @bodyposipanda 🐼🦄🌷 I didn't get it. I was frustrated with the sentiment because I didn't understand how you could be more than a body. My whole belief system, my whole identity wrapped itself around my body. My self worth, inner and outside validation all inherently depended on whether or not my body was "good or bad" that day. 👉 "You are more than a body" echoed in my brain, lost in a fumble for meaning. How? How could I be more than the sum of my parts? How could I be more than my body if that's the only thing I am consumed by? "Does this make me look good or bad?" "Will this affect how I look?" "Do they think I look good or bad?" "Am I going to look good or bad?" Over and over and over in mind, 1000's of times a day. I am a child of trauma, consumerism, rom com movies and lower to middle class syndrome. I am one of millions of girls who think that they are no more than their bodies. It wasn't until 6 months heavily involved in this community where I realized that I am not just my body. I am: 🌷 perseverance 🌷 laughter 🌷 a friend 🌷 art enthusiast 🌷 a lover 🌷 gentle 🌷 sarcastic 🌷 trauma survivor 🌷 a daughter 🌷 wannabe world traveller 🌷 science advocate 🌷 a philosopher 🌷 a grower/a seeker/a mover \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\ And NONE of those had to do with whether or not my body was valued. It has taken a while to grasp that I am more than my body, I've had to reshape my identity as not being the "girl with secret disorders." I came clean, I spoke out, I learned, I practiced and I seek value through eternal objects such as: ⚡️ human connection ⚡️ education ⚡️ the feeling of love ⚡️ being mindful. \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\ You are more than the body that takes up space in the world. As scary and as confusing as that might be, you are so much more than that and then some. #loveyou #morethanenough #stardust
Thank you, Kenzie, for your work.