Plus-size model Ashley Graham doesn’t let cellulite faze her — and she wants all women to embrace their bodies too.
Graham took to Instagram to post a carefree photo of herself riding a bicycle in a mini-tunic that revealed leg cellulite. Instead of using an app to camouflage the dimples, she proudly posted the pic as-is with the caption, “A little cellulite never hurt nobody.. Stop judging yourself, embrace the things that society has called ‘ugly’.#lovetheskinyourein #beautybeyondsize.”
A photo posted by A S H L E Y G R A H A M (@theashleygraham) on Jun 15, 2016 at 2:56pm PDT
Her fans cheered her on, leaving comments like, “My hero,” “#preach,” and “What real women look like.” I guess you could say Graham puts the “model” in “role model.” And she’s not the only prominent voice calling for self-acceptance.
Body-image specialist Holli Rubin applauds Graham’s bold move, saying the model is “not only allowing her cellulite to show without covering it up and Photoshopping, but even … attempting to change followers’ views by highlighting what is usually deemed ugly and in need of being hidden.”
In April, comedian Amy Schumer slammed Glamour magazine for including her in its “Chic at Any Size!” issue focused on plus-size women. “I go between a size 6 and an 8,” she said on her Instagram. “Young girls seeing my body type thinking that is plus size? What are your thoughts? Mine are not cool glamour not glamourous.”
Recently, body-positive singer Meghan Trainor expressed her anger over having her waist digitally altered in her video “Me Too.” “I don’t know how [they] would shave my waist off,“ she told Robin Roberts on Good Morning America. “They made me skinnier than the dancers next to me.”
A photo posted by Meghan Trainor (@meghan_trainor) on May 10, 2016 at 9:23am PDT
Last year, singer Zendaya called out Modeliste magazine for digitally altering her figure. She posted a split image of her Photoshopped body next to the original photo of her actual body on Instagram, writing, “Had a new shoot come out today and was shocked when I found my 19 year old hips and torso quite manipulated. These are the things that make women self conscious, that create the unrealistic ideals of beauty that we have.”
Had a new shoot come out today and was shocked when I found my 19 year old hips and torso quite manipulated. These are the things that make women self conscious, that create the unrealistic ideals of beauty that we have. Anyone who knows who I am knows I stand for honest and pure self love. So I took it upon myself to release the real pic (right side) and I love it😍😘 Thank you @modelistemagazine for pulling down the images and fixing this retouch issue.
A photo posted by Zendaya (@zendaya) on Oct 20, 2015 at 7:49pm PDT
Always one to speak her mind, singer Lorde told the world she was perfectly OK with her imperfect skin, tweeting a Photoshopped picture of herself onstage with the caption, “i find this curious - two photos from today, one edited so my skin is perfect and one real. remember flaws are ok :-).”
“When a celebrity expresses herself in an honest and positive way by accepting her 'flaws’ publicly, it shows her followers, both women and men, that they too can allow themselves to be less than ‘perfect,’” says Rubin.
And there’s no denying that with their millions of followers, body-positive stars can make a major impact on the attitudes of young girls — and even grown women — helping us to love the bodies we were born into.