Celebrity life can seem appealing with all the glitz and glam, the flashing lights, and all of those red carpets. But with it comes gossip columns, relentless paparazzi, and your unforgiving social media, you realize that a Hollywood star’s life isn’t as bright and sunny after all—especially when it comes to unrealistic body standards for women.
Tabloids can get very critical on how a female celebrity goes about her body. Which is probably why airbrushing, face tuning, and photoshopping is so prevalent in the industry. This leads to fans subjecting themselves to these standards that celebrities present themselves on social media. The editing can make your skin look flawless and picture-perfect, even if what you cover up is a natural body occurrence.
Like stretch marks.
HuffPost reports that an estimated80 percent of people have stretch marks, which are often caused by rapid growth, weight changes or hormonal changes. Pregnancy is often the biggest cause—leaving moms with “tiger stripes”—but men aren’t unaffected by stretch marks and women who haven’t had children get them too.
So it’s humanly impossible for celebrities not to get stretch marks, simply because they’re also human (shocker). They gain and lose weight, their hormones change, their muscles grow (with all those workouts how could it not), and most importantly, they get pregnant. So, of course, those little stripes are bound to appear.
But the media can be brutal when it comes to natural body occurrences like stretch marks, for it is believed that celebrities—especially women—simply cannot bear such mundane characteristics, and must appear a certain kind of way. One that will set unrealistic body standards for girls all over the world, causing them to go through lengths just to make their stretch marks disappear. (Note the sarcasm)
But in this progressive world, female celebrities are now hopping on the body-positive charge, by speaking out about their own struggles with body image and sharing unretouched images in an attempt to normalize things like stretch marks. Because duh, they really are completely normal.
Ashley is famously known to tout body positivity everywhere she goes. Now, as she and husband Justin Ervin eagerly await the arrival of their first child, her pregnancy is no exception to showcasing the intimately candid moments of loving one’s own body.
The model, author, and mom of two had women cheering when she posted a video of her stretch marks on Twitter last year. In an interview with Good Housekeeping, she elaborated, “It’s all about trying to be happy with myself. Because I’m not blind: I see my body, I see the difference in shape, I see that I gained weight. But I also see with those same eyes that I have a beautiful baby boy, and this little girl that’s relentless and amazing, and I am very happy.”
Demi Lovato has never been shy about discussing her self-love journey. She’s always been frank about her struggles with mental health, from her bipolar disorder diagnosis to her drug and alcohol addiction to her ongoing battle with an eating disorder. She proudly posts a photo of her stretch marks on her IG stories, followed by pictures of her cellulite.
The Top Chef host hasn’t been shy about keeping it real on social media, often sharing photos with her stretch marks and cellulite on display. She has opened up about gaining weight while filming the show, and in 2017, she said and was finally done worrying about it. “This year, I’ve decided my weight will not be my focus,” she told The Hollywood Reporter.
We all know that Riri has been keeping it real since day one. With her size-inclusive lingerie line, Savage x Fenty, and her journey to body acceptance she discussed with Vogue, “You’ve just got to laugh at yourself, honestly. I mean, I know when I’m having a fat day and when I’ve lost weight. I accept all of the bodies.”
Plus-sized model Denise Bidot puts it like this: “It wasn’t until I owned my body and really learned to love it–all of it–that my career just went to a level that I couldn’t have expected.” She has been been working hard to push the boundaries on what people and brands consider beautiful.