Can you believe another year has come and gone? Today, in celebration of the amazingness 2015 brought into the body positive movement, I’m sharing with you my 10 favorite body positive moments of 2015.
1. #LoveYourLines on Instagram
“Love your Lines” was created by Erika Salazar and Alex Smith. Their goal is to celebrate “real women, real bodies, and real beauty.” In a social media era when most of the images we see appear to be flawless and “perfect”, it’s refreshing to have a place were the truth about our bodies is celebrated. Yes, some women have cellulite and stretch marks and that is perfectly normal.
All submissions are displayed in black & white and feature a personal message from each woman describing their path to embracing their love lines. All body types are celebrated and featured here– making it one of the loveliest places on Instagram.
2. “Dancing Man” Dances On
Sean O’Brien was at a concert earlier this year and while dancing was shamed by a group of guys who not only openly mocked him, but after capturing photos of their meanness, proceeded to step up their bullying into the web by posting it online for all to see.
However, just as the internet does sometimes, it stepped up and turned one mean act into a beautiful one.
The webosphere was lit and #FindDancingMan spread like wildfire. Finally finding Sean all the way in Liverpool, England!…and that, my lovelies, was only the beginning.
Sean flew down to Los Angeles and in one whirlwind visit had an epic dance party with approximately 1000 new friends. He danced alongside Meghan Trainor on The Today Show and threw the first pitch at a L.A Dodgers game. Not bad, Internet. Not bad.
3. 101 Body Positive Bikini Babes
101 Body Positive Bikini Babes was started in 2014 by Stina Scott, the fabulous Canadian blogger behind Fatshion Peepshow. This year she created a second compilation of bathing beauties and believe me when I tell you, my lovelies, it was just as amazing as the first one. There is something about seeing 101 women just letting down all their inhibitions and celebrating their bodies. There’s absolute freedom in loving your body as it is this very moment– no when-I’s or if-I’s, just pure body love.
“What you put on your body should make you feel confident, beautiful, and sexy; and it isn’t anyone else’s business. It took me a bit of time in regards to the bikini to learn that society shouldn’t dictate what’s acceptable for anyone to wear. It’s an amazing feeling when you realize that fact, internalize it, grow to accept it and in turn wear whatever you want to wear rather than what society says you should…” ―Stina Scott
This summer will go down as one of my favorites. People of all body types not only reclaimed the summer, but reclaimed the beach. One of my favorite body positive moments this year was Wear Your Voice Magazine’s Drop The Towel movement. The magazine inspired everyone, regardless of size or gender to stop sitting on the sidelines and just enjoy life.
“This is a movement for all body shapes, sizes, colors, and genders to proudly proclaim that they are done hiding their already beautiful beach/pool/lake or otherwise summer body – and are ready to lose that cover-up and drop the towel!”
What happens when O magazine advises a reader to wear a crop top, “If (and only if!) you have a flat stomach”?
Well what else? We inundate the internet with photos of all type of bodies rocking the heck out of our crop tops– and it was phenomenal.
Final verdict, Can I pull off a crop top? If, and only if, YOU want to wear one.
6. The Comeback of Body Hair
2015 saw the return of body hair in full force. Women all across the world were not only embracing but showing off their fabulous follicles in colorful hues and au natural– and it was pure loveliness. Regardless of where you are in the topic of body hair, the fact that as women we have decided to reclaim our bodies and with it the option to rock body hair on our legs, armpits or any other place it naturally blooms is amazing.
7. Ashley Nell Tipton Wins Project Runway
Seeing Designer Ashley win Season 14 of Project Runway was absolutely incredible. You see, besides being an incredible opportunity for Ashley, her win means a lot for the plus size community. Ashley Nell Tipton has just blown open the door for other talented plus size designers to be taken seriously and has spotlighted the fact that plus size clothes on plus size women are not only beautiful but fashionable.
8. Gabourey Sidibe’s Love Scene on Empire
It’s unbelievable that some people still assume fat people don’t or can’t have romance in their lives. Not only is it ridiculous, but so far from the truth. On Episode 6 of Empire “A High Hope for a Low Heaven” we were introduced to Becky’s (Gabourey Sidibe) boo, MC J Poppa. As most of you die-hard fans know, Season 2 of Empire pushed the envelope to whole new levels of drama, but this particular scene was different. It was very mellow. Actually it was completely drama-free. Just a woman and her man having a nice romantic evening on a rooftop. And the downplay, of the scene was exactly what it needed. Why? because it’s a normal relationship and regardless of what a few ridiculous people out there believe, it does happen in the everyday lives of fat men and women. Period.
“Also, yes. I, a plus sized, dark-skinned woman, had a love scene on primetime television. I had the most fun ever filming that scene even though I was nervous. But I felt sexy and beautiful and I felt like I was doing a good job. I’m very proud of the work we all did to make that scene a great opening for the episode. I keep hearing that people are “hating” on it. I’m not sure how anyone could hate on love but that’s okay. You may have your memes. Honestly, I’m at work too busy to check Twitter anyway. #Booked. Hope you enjoy next week’s show!” ―Gabourey Sidibe
9. Plus Size Women x Active Lifestyle
2015 was the year plus size women were recognized as active individuals. The uprising of attention is not because this was the year that plus size women across the globe decided to get their fitness on, that’s been happening for years, but mainly because in 2015, everyone finally noticed– yes! plus size women workout.
Whether it’s yoga, pole dancing, or cross-country running plus size women are being seen as active individuals and that sitting-on-the-couch-watching-tv-with-bomboms à la Peggy Bundy stereotype is slowly being dissolved.
10. Danielle Brooks
This was the year of Danielle, the talented actress was everywhere. She sprinkled her infectious smile and body positivity everywhere she went. She shared her self-love journey in a powerful essay published on Glamour.com entitled How I Learned To Love My Body:
“I dreamed of being an actor, but when I looked for reflections of myself on the screen, I found few. Still, I found inspiration in the words of Sharon Flake and the music of India Arie. I took acting classes, where I felt free and accepted. Free to let out the biggest screams, to roll around the floor like a cat, and to cry sloppy tears without being judged. Accepted by this tribe of fellow performers, unique individuals who valued me for my talent and my boldness and not for what I looked like (or didn’t look like). In acting I found my confidence, my joy, my safe place.”
Danielle later teamed up with People StyleWatch and started the #LoveYourShape Movement, asking women of all shapes and sizes to share their favorite body photos with her on Instagram.
She also reminded us that something as simple as taking off your shirt at the gym could be highly empowering.
Well, there you have them, my lovelies, my 10 favorite body positive moments of 2015. Which were your favorite moments? Share them with me in the comments below.
Until next time, have a safe and wonderful New Year. See in you in 2016!