Preach girl, Preach!
The fight against body shaming is at an all time high these days and activist and model Ashley Graham is at the forefront of the battle. Ashley made history last year as the first plus-size model to appear on the cover of Sports Illustrated. Ever since the she’s been celebrated for breaking down barriers of women’s body standards in the modeling and fashion industry.
Despite the positive recognition she’s gotten over the past year, Ashley still continues to receive a lot of backlash for her size on her social media. In response, she wrote the essay titled “Shamed if I do, Shamed if I Don’t” and posted in on the website The Lenny Letter. It’s an essay that everyone should read at least once.
Read what she has to say!
Social Media Voice
Ashley Graham is most well known for being the first plus sized model to cover the magazine Sports Illustrated. She recently wrote an essay and posted it to the website, The Lenny Letter to address body shamers in our society.
It began: “Raise your hand if you go through a tough selfie-editing process before picking the perfect photo to post on Instagram. Most people wouldn’t put up a picture they felt made them feel less than beautiful. Having been a model for sixteen years, I know my angles, just like we all know our favorite filters and lighting and our good sides. I pick the photos I like best.
“They say you should never read the comments. But I simply can’t not do it. Social media has given me a voice and allowed me to further my platform as a body activist. Without it, I couldn’t have built the #BeautyBeyondSize community. My followers are the first people I turn to for feedback on anything I do, from designing my lingerie, dress, and swimsuit lines to the things I discuss in my public speeches. I have to read the comments.”
Ashley continued, “I know the comments won’t all be positive. I’m a confident woman with thick skin, and as a model in the public eye, I’m conditioned to accept criticism. But last week, I admit that I had a tougher time brushing off the haters.
“While I was on set filming America’s Next Top Model, my hairstylist snapped a picture of me in a white knit skirt, matching crop top, and an amazing Balmain leather jacket that I absolutely loved. It was one of those photos where you look and say to yourself, “YESSSS, HONEY! I look damn good!” I didn’t give it a second thought when I posted it, but soon the image went viral. Not because of how good I looked wearing a high-end designer that doesn’t usually market to women my size, but because of people’s misguided views on women’s bodies and who owns the rights to them.”