It’s a scientific fact that images shared on social media, which are often digitally enhanced and artfully curated, breed a culture of perfectionism that is damaging to all who spend hours scrolling through feeds on various platforms. Diversity is rare and flaws are rarely highlighted, with perfect bodies on display sans cellulite or stubborn fat rolls. These images of smooth thighs and flat abs lead many to believe that this is the only “beautiful” body type — but Ashley Graham is on a mission to drop the veil of infallibility surrounding the modelling industry.
Graham, who broke industry barriers when she became the first plus-sized person to grace the cover of Sports Illustrated, is, one Instagram at a time, revealing what a woman’s body is really like. By publicizing her blemishes and often not-so-beautiful marks, she’s taking on the role of “real woman’s champion.” In a recent post, she’s showing off her cellulite in the hopes of normalizing a perceived flaw and helping others realize that this is something that everyone — including models — suffer from.
“Someone once told me my thighs were ‘cellulite city’. But I now realize these thighs tell a story of victory and courage. I will not let others dictate what they think my body should look like for their own comfort, and neither should you,” Graham wrote.
A photo posted by A S H L E Y G R A H A M (@theashleygraham) on Jul 6, 2016 at 3:39am PDT
Graham also shared her cellulite with fans in another post a few weeks ago, writing, “A little cellulite never hurt nobody.. Stop judging yourself, embrace the things that society has called 'ugly’.”
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
Considering the fact that dermatologists claim cellulite may affect up to 90 percent of women at some point in their lives, it’s wonderful to see a celebrity being so open about it. And, since cellulite is found on both men and women, skinny and overweight people alike, it’s a topic that everyone can relate to — and obviously shouldn’t feel shame over.
Graham’s post comes just a few months after Chrissy Teigen shared an image of stretch marks on her legs, further proving that the images of perfect bodies we see in advertisements and social media are heavily edited and digitally manipulated.
So, the next time you compare yourself to a flawless model, remember that looks are deceiving. Kudos to Ashley for helping us realize that cellulite happens to us all and should be celebrated instead of shamed!