Plus-size style expert Marcy Guevara shares her advice.
For a lot of women, “body image” might as well be a four-letter word. When those clothes don’t quite fit right, when the scale reads a little higher than you want it to, when that damn cellulite seems like it’s becoming more prominent, it’s easy to feel frustrated and betrayed by your own figure. It’s a setback that plus-size style expert Marcy Guevara has seen time and again — but, she says, the way to combat a struggling body image doesn’t have anything to do with putting on a particular piece of clothing or adopting certain strategies to hide your “flaws.” Instead, it’s about shifting your perspective.
“Our ideas about body image come from somewhere,” Guevara says. “So, it’s really about flipping the script and changing how we think about it and how we think about our bodies.”
Making the promise to love your body is a powerful step in the right direction, but this isn’t all Guevara is talking about. To find true, lasting self-acceptance, she suggests following three key pieces of actionable, body-image-boosting advice.
1. Give thanks to the body you have.
“Focus on gratitude and being thankful for the bodies we do have; for the arms that we do have, whether they have cellulite on them… or not. I’m just thankful to have legs,” Guevara says. “Being thankful for the body that you do have is central to loving it and being able to live a life that’s full — and that’s full of more than just worrying about what size pants you’re in.”
2. Buy for your current (not future) size.
It may be seem like a motivational tactic to purchase an item a size smaller than normal with the intention of fitting into it at some point, but this does nothing to help your existing body image, Guevara says. “Let’s stop torturing ourselves… Stop buying things that are going to fit five pounds from now,” she suggests. “Dress the skin that you’re in.”
3. Blame the clothes for an ill-fit, not yourself.
Trying to fit into a certain size, style or trend is a common dressing-room battle whether you’re plus-size or not, but you don’t have to beat yourself up when it doesn’t work out. “Instead of making it about your body and how ‘I have to lose weight, and I have to do this or that to make this fit,’ blame it on the outfit,” Guevara says. “It’s not you. Maybe this dress is cut poorly. Maybe these pants are too slim-fit. Instead of beating ourselves up, let’s beat up the dress.”
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