Lizzo has more than proven that she’s a force to be reckoned with. Yet she continues to have to defend herself to the haters who are constantly throwing shade her way (we’re looking at you, Aries Spears). But we shouldn’t be surprised in a place like Hollywood, where looks are everything and far too often less is more when it comes to curves.
But there are lots of ladies who are saying to hell with Hollywood’s short-sighted definition of beauty and carving out their own lane. They are unapologetically themselves and doing the damn thing. These are some of our favorite body positive celebrities who have no time for body shaming while they continue to slay.
Gabourey Sidibe burst onto the scene in 2009, playing the lead role in the critically acclaimed motion picture Precious, a role that earned her an Academy-award nomination. Since then, she has continued to stun in roles in American Horror Story, Tower Heist and Empire. But while the New York native made a name for herself in show business, Sidibe struggled with mental health and eating disorders, something she writes about in her 2017 memoir, “This is Just My Face, Try Not to Stare.” These days, Sidibe is likely spending most of her time preparing for her wedding to fiancé Brandon Frankel, planned for Spring 2023.
Actress and singer Amber Riley first sang her way into our hearts as Mercedes Jones on the hit Fox musical dramedy series, Glee. But that was after she was rejected during an audition for American Idol at age 17. But Riley would go on to take home a reality talent show trophy of her own, winning season 17 of Dancing with the Stars in 2013.
There aren’t too many high-end designers Georgia native Precious Lee hasn’t worked with. Her portfolio reads like a who’s who of designer labels, including Versace, Moschino and Balmain. She even graced graced one of the covers of Vogue Italia in September 2020. In 2021, Lee gave acting a try, playing the role of Cherise in the Starz original series, Run the World.
Throughout her career, actress Niecy Nash has made us laugh with hilarious roles in Reno 911!, Scream Queens and Claws to name a few. And now she’s trying to help ambitious singers win lots of cash on the Fox game show, Don’t Forget the Lyrics. Since 2020, Nash has been married to Jessica Betts. The pair made history as the first same-sex couple featured on the cover of Essence.
Danielle Brooks, earned critical acclaim as Tasha “Taystee” Jefferson in Netflix’s Orange Is the New Black. And she has not slowed down since. In 2016, Brooks played Sofia in the Broadway version of The Color Purple, which earned her a Tony nomination. And in 2021, she took on the role of gospel music legend, Mahalia Jackson in the Lifetime biopic “Mahalia,” a role she says she’d been preparing for since her first church choir solo at age 6. “Gospel music truly is the heartbeat of me,” she said in an interview with Deadline. “And so, it’s the fabric of who I am the same way that it was for Mahalia Jackson. It means a lot to me to get to have sung all of her songs and to embody her through this kind of music.”
When Anita Marshall first tried to make a career in modeling, she wasn’t received with open arms. She encountered her fair share of haters who tried to tell her she wasn’t the right size. But she got the last laugh when she made her first appearance in the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue in 2020. “My message to the plus size community and anyone who is “different” is to love yourself. We live in a society that tells us how we should look and feel. No one is the same and that’s what is so beautiful about people,” she said in an interview. “Handle your body with love and care because you are only given one.”
Adrienne C. Moore
Actress Adrienne C. Moore has played roles on both sides of the law. She’s probably best known for her role as an inmate in the hit Netflix series Orange is the New Black. But she’s also played a detective in the Canadian drama series Pretty Hard Cases. And in case you were wondering, Moore says she’s the one chasing down the bad guys most of the time. “I try to do as many of the stunts as I can do, but my stunt double is another full-figured, beautiful, African Canadian woman, and I want to give those women an opportunity to shine as well because they have a hard time finding stuntwomen that match my physique that can do stunts,” she told Variety.
You can’t have a list of body positive celebs without including the Queen herself. Queen Latifah is a multi-hyphenate talent with way too many amazing credits to list here. Whether she’s slaying rappers on the mic or bad guys on her hit CBS drama, The Equalizer, this beauty has proven that there isn’t a whole lot she can’t do. Did we forget to mention that she’s a Cover Girl?
Yvette Nicole Brown
From hilarious roles in Curb Your Enthusiasm to Community, Emmy-nominated actress and comedian Yvette Nicole Brown keeps making us laugh. But if you have a hard time keeping up with all of her roles, you wouldn’t be alone. In fact, the actress admits there isn’t much she says no to, especially when it comes to family-friendly roles in Disney projects. “I like being creative and I especially love being part of positive PG-13 entertainment. That’s my jam. So all of the invitations from Disney are easy yeses for me,” she said in an interview with KGET.