I have an unfortunate habit of shopping online for clothing. This is unfortunate because oftentimes that means that when clothing arrives, it doesn’t look quite like it did online or on the model.
I’ve noticed that when I shop online at certain stores, I almost always end up drawn to clothing worn by the same model. Over and over again.
And over and over again, these clothing items arrive, and while they may look decent on me, I’m always disappointed when the items don’t fit quite like they do on the model.
The thing is, we have to be realistic about our body types. It’s not just a weight or muscle tone issue. Women have different figures. Even if we were all standing next to one another with identical fat and muscle percentages, we’d all still look pretty different. We hold weight in different areas, are taller and shorter, have longer legs or longer torsos—there is so much variation to be celebrated!
Yet, sometimes, we can get too stuck idolizing the type of body we want. In my case, I finally realized that no matter how “in-shape” I get, it just isn’t physically possible for me to look like this lengthy, lean model whose clothes I keep buying. I just don’t have the same body proportions as her, but that’s OK.
There’s a freedom in coming to the realization that you can never obtain what you think is the “ideal” figure. And the other good news? Everyone has a slightly different opinion of what that is! Some may wish they had Beyoncé-type curves. Others wish they were as thin as Emma Watson. Some may wish they were tall like Taylor Swift, while others wish they were more petite like Rachel Bilson.
This all ties in similarly with our recent blog post about beauty standards—we all may wish we met some ideal standard of beauty we’ve created in our heads, but there are so many different ways to be beautiful! The same can be said of our figures.
I’ve found over time that the only time I’m ever really content with my body is when I regularly work out and eat right. I don’t even have to lose weight or see muscle definition; I just need to know that I’m doing something healthy and beneficial for my body. That’s when I feel my best and begin to feel comfortable being in my skin.
It’s during the times when I neglect my body that I start to wistfully wish I looked like the American Eagle or Adore Me swimsuit models whom I so often buy clothes based on.
Years ago, while skimming a tabloid at the supermarket as a teen, I read something that truly stuck with me and changed the way I thought about my own body.
It was a quote from a very thin (and small-chested) actress who encouraged young girls to embrace their bodies. She made a comment about her smaller bra size and said something along the lines of how she finally realized that, since she is smaller than most girls, she can wear things they can’t. She may not have a so-called enviable chest, but she could wear dresses with more daring necklines than girls with larger bra sizes. This helped her feel happier and more confident with the body she had.
It was a great reminder that there are always pros and cons to every body type. Even something you may believe is a negative can actually be a positive if you think about it differently.
Ladies, embrace what you have. Take care of yourself, and watch your confidence grow. Soon you’ll be happy in the skin you’re in!
Do you have an area of your body that you wish were different? In what ways may others actually envy it? Trust me, someone probably does. The grass always seems greener.