Body image is a minefield. We should be comfortable being ourselves no matter what shape we come in, yet we should also strive to be healthy. Problem is healthy isn’t skinny. Yet somewhere along the way fashion mags and society at large started equating skinny with healthy and beautiful. It’s been a disaster for the self-image of millions, from eating disorder sufferers to anybody whose silhouette doesn’t look like those of Selena Gomez or Justin Timberlake. But there’s a movement afoot that you can’t miss — a reclaiming of the beauty standard by full-bodied people who are healthy, productive, energetic and beautiful. Recently Lena Dunham, the hugely talented writer-producer-actor and creator of Girls, is winning kudos for her (and Jemina Kirke’s) unretouched photo shoots — posing in lingerie for Lonely Label Lingerie. The ads don’t look like anything else you see in glossy mags — and that’s the point.
Dunham, an inspiration to many, has passionate followers who she engages on social media. Earlier this summer Dunham posted a pic of herself on a boat in her swimsuit, looking glam and happy. It’s easy to imagine the reaction this photo got as pushing Dunham toward the lingerie shoot — and what it would mean for her fans and body positivity. Here’s the passionate reaction one fan had: “You are the only celebrity with my body type. I have such a hard time figuring out what the heck I look like and what I should be comfortable wearing. I am so thankful that you exist and are doing what you do. Because it makes me feel beautiful and more at ease about my body. I wish there were more people with bodies that looked like mine on screen. Thank you.”
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A photo posted by Lena Dunham (@lenadunham) on