If you've read my "Earning Confidence" article, or know me at all you would know that I have had very little self-confidence in the past. This summer I decided to fully do something crazy, and I bought a high-waisted bikini. Shortly afterwards, I saw a lot of posts on Facebook and Twitter saying "If you weigh over 200 pounds, don't wear a bikini. Save others from getting sick." What really made me sick was the fact that 1) girls are shaming other girls into feeling bad about themselves, and 2) I'm sure there are people out there who took that seriously. So I, a girl who weighs more than 200 pounds and has cellulite on her legs, proudly wore my bikini on the beach, and here is what happened.
I wear incredibly modest clothing: various shades of black and white that covers almost every inch of my body (this also applied to swimwear). So that bright, coral colored bikini was a big change to what I typically wear. I had worn it at my pool already this summer, but never in front of anyone other than close friends and family. So I bravely took off my cover at the beach, and guess what! No one got sick. No one stared like they were disgusted. There were people who even told me it was cute, and that I looked gorgeous in it. So, again, doing something atypical to test my hypothesis, I posted a picture on social media. Again, no hateful comments, no one bashing my body or saying mean things.
At the end of my little social experiment, I realized a few things. I realized that confidence is the key to any outfit, even if that outfit is a bikini. It takes courage to rock any article of clothing that society tells you you can't wear. I wore a bikini, despite the cellulite on my legs, the rolls on my back, and the other imperfections that keep me from doing and wearing a lot of things. However, this is the end of that; the end of letting what people who don't understand what it's like to live in my skin dictate what I do with it. My body is healthy, and while it might not be what others think it should be, I will be proud of it.
Also, if you want some inspiration on how to rock a bikini, check out Ashley Graham and Loey Lane.