Confessions of a Curve-less Girl

I’m joining up with Thinking Out Loud again this week to talk about something close to my heart: body image. 

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We’ve all heard the (completely untrue) phrase “real women have curves”. And we all know the backlash that phrase has created. Of course, I completely disagree with this statement and I think it can be really harmful.

See, I’m a curve(less) girl. Always have been. Not only am I petite, but I’m totally straight up-and-down. During middle school and high school when I noticed my fellow classmates developing boobs, butts and just curves in general, I wondered when mine would come. But after going through years of an eating disorder and emerging on the other side still curveless, I’ve come to embrace my natural body type. I’m a proud member of the A cup club (if only that were a real club!) and I literally have no hips. One reason why it took me so long to be okay with my body is just that. Having no hips means my thighs are naturally close together, and I’ve never had that coveted thigh gap (when my feet touch), even when I was severely underweight. For the longest time, I thought my thighs touching meant I was fat, but it’s really just because of how my body is built. Some women have thigh gaps, some don’t and that’s okay!

This is when I was near my skinniest (and unhealthiest) and my thighs only didn't touch when I was standing with my feet apart.

This is when I was near my skinniest (and unhealthiest) and my thighs only didn’t touch when I was standing with my feet apart (July 2009).

I’ve grown to love my body type. I’ve learned how to dress to enhance it — having a boyish shape means dresses with no structure absolutely drown me and I can’t really pull off the high-waisted shorts look. At the same time, I can wear strapless dresses and tops without looking too sexy (and honestly, I will probably never be considered ‘sexy’ and that’s okay) and I can get away with wearing shorter hemlines because they aren’t too revealing on my smaller frame. Sure, sometimes I feel like a twelve-year-old girl in a bikini because I don’t have that hourglass shape that most women do, but most of the time, I wouldn’t want to change my body type at all.

Also, this isn’t necessarily about being thin. Plenty of thinner women out there DO have curves and some like me don’t. The point is, there isn’t one body type that defines a woman!

No curves but I still rock a bikini (May 2013).

No curves but I still rock a bikini (May 2013).

So am I not a real woman because I’m shaped like a ruler? Of course not! I’m just as much of a woman as any other female out there and NO ONE should be made to feel less than just because of how they look. I also want to apply this to transgendered women, who probably feel even less like women in certain instances. I believe anyone who identifies as a female should be treated as such!

Moral of the story: don’t let societal standards or stupid phrases keep you from being who you are!

How do you feel about the phrase “real women have curves”? 

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Fashion Friday: Just Keep Swimming

If you even glance at the cover of pretty much any fashion or fitness mag, there’s probably something on there about swimsuit season–getting the ‘perfect’ bikini body, finding a swimsuit for your budget, etc. I’m not here to talk about those things, though. I want to talk about how to find the perfect suit for the body YOU have, right now, that’ll make you feel your very best.

First things first: the hard truth. Not every swimsuit’s gonna look good on you. You may fall in love with a cute halter bikini that looks amazing on your friend, but when you try it on, it just doesn’t look right. Remember that it isn’t your body that’s to blame, it’s just that not every style looks great on every body, and that’s ok. There’s definitely at least one style out there that’ll make you love what you see, so don’t get discouraged when a certain style doesn’t look so great.

For example, I was shopping at Hollister the other day when they were having a sale on swimsuit separates for $10 each. What a steal, right? I found plenty of cute options, and tried a few of them on. I have a smaller chest, so the halter bandeaus and triangle bikinis made me look even smaller, but a ruffly halter push-up bikini made me look a little fuller up there and enhanced what I have. With bottoms, I liked the look of the high rise boyshorts but since I am pretty straight up-and-down with no curves, it looked awful on me. Sticking with bikini style bottoms with side ties gives me some shape.

Look for detailing that looks good on your body, like side ties or ruffles.

Look for detailing that looks good on your body, like side ties or ruffles.

Don’t be afraid to mix and match. A lot of stores sell two pieces in separates, partly so you can buy them in different sizes if you need to, but also so you can mix and match patterns and colors. I personally like to go for neutral, solid colored bottoms with a patterned top featuring the same color as the bottoms. I have a pair of white side-tie bikini bottoms that I wear with three separate patterned tops. It was cheaper than buying 3 full swim sets, but it’s like I have 3 different swimsuits.

Mixing and matching can save you money and give you a unique look.

Mixing and matching can save you money and give you a unique look.

This might be obvious, but make sure the swimsuit fits. Don’t worry if you have to buy separate sizes in the top and bottom to fit right. I know it’s easier said than done, but don’t freak out about the size on the tag, either. I know I still tend to stress if I have to wear a size other than my usual one, but different suits fit differently based on style and store, so you may be one size in one store and another one in another. It’s good to find a store, or style, that fits you well, so you have a better idea that another suit from that same store will fit similarly.

You can have fun this summer, soaking up the sun and enjoying the water, without worrying about how you look in your swimsuit…because you’ll know you look good!

Do you have any swimsuit shopping tips?