On Monday, I was in Brussels with PrimaDonna Lingerie. They presented an expo of vintage pieces and some interesting information about how a PrimaDonna bra is manufactured (it’s made of 45 individual pieces and hand-sewn!). The highlight of the day was their fashion show, with many beautiful women, including top model → Myla Dalbesio (you might know her, she was Calvin Klein’s plus-sized model for an underwear campaign which caused a horrible shitstorm – instead of people admiring the great choice CK made with this beauty!).
When I posted a picture of her on my Instagram account, one of the first comments was about her and being plus size – which, in the commenter’s opinion, is not okay because she’s not plus-sized and our society must be totally sick if she is. It made me think about why this comment came up because I hadn’t mentioned anything about her size, neither had I said something about plus size. I had just posted a beautiful women, with a gorgeous body, presenting great underwear (and referred to my Snapchat account for more live pictures of the show – with even more incredibly beautiful women!). By the way: PrimaDonna Lingerie makes underwear and especially bras for bigger cups, which in principle has nothing to do with plus size.
Why do people care so much about this? Why isn’t she allowed to be called plus size if she’s not a specific (let’s call it “obvious plus”) size? “Body Acceptance” doesn’t only mean accepting your own body but also others’ (skinny or fat or anything in between!). It means that you’re not the one who’s deciding about their health, what size they should be, what’s better for them, what’s more beautiful in your opinion. Short: “Body Acceptance” means not running down others’ bodies in order to make yourself feel better in yours.
Sure, it’s not the best message, especially for young girls, to show a woman with an absolutely normal body and call her plus size. But that’s fashion. You’re either size zero or anything else – which is plus size. And unfortunately, in fashion, for some brands or model agencies this already starts at size 38 (EU) instead of a 42, which would be more than enough for starting plus sizes. I’m not calling this okay – this is something that needs to be changed. 38 is not plus size for everybody. It’s a fashion thing. And this is why it’s our responsibility to always remember that this is not real life. Mothers have to remind their daughters that this is business and not a goal for everyone. Girls need to stop putting themselves down by comparing themselves with models in magazines (we all know that they don’t even look like this – it’s all Photoshop!). You’re not supposed to look like somebody else!
Anyways, why do people label each other? Why can’t Myla just be called a model, why do we always have to refer to a size instead of a person? That’s not “Body Acceptance”, that’s judging, even though this time it’s not in a bad way.
But there’s always this tedious discussion about models not being plus size enough, while actual plus size models (thinking of super babe → Tess Holliday!) are called unhealthy, glorifying obesity. What do people want? You can’t please everyone (not only in terms of “plus size”, but in any situation!). You’re either way too thin and not allowed to be called plus size or you’re too fat and not good enough for the term plus size. This discussion is sad and discriminatory for everybody.
Let’s stop labeling people, see them as numbers or sizes and what they “should” be. Let’s look at this picture and see a gorgeous woman with a beautiful, normal body.