So, it’s officially spring and if you’re here in LA it’s already feeling like summer. And with warm weather comes everyone’s favorite time of year…bathing suit season!
And with bathing suit season comes everyone’s not so favorite mixture of insecurity and anxiety and some form of self-doubt about how their body looks in a bikini.
Now, I’ll be the first to admit that I loveee a good bathing suit, the skimpier the better. But dammit I don’t think I’ve ever felt 100% confident or comfortable in a single bathing suit I own.
Here’s the list of things that runs through my head as soon as I put on a swimsuit:
Oh my god I’m so pale. I look like a vampire. But, like, not a hot one. One that’s been in a cave all winter hanging out with bats.
My boobs do not fill this top out. Or this top. Or this one. Even this one that “supposedly” has pushup cushions or whatever. I have no cleavage. I have the chest of a 12-year-old boy.
Okay, my stomach could be flatter. I wish I had a six-pack. Or at least those weird little divets near my hips – what are those even called? Why am I so bloated? Should I try some of that diet tea people post on instagram? Oh my god no. Not the skinny tea. Never.
Literally. Every time I try on or put on a bikini some version of these thoughts runs through my mind.
I’m not stoked that I think these things. I know I should love my body and rock whatever the hell bathing suit I want. And most days, even after these thoughts bombard me, I wear the swimsuit anyway. I’ve learned that, sometimes, you just have to say, “fuck it” and by doing so you realize, hey, I can do this. I can wear this. I can rock this.
What I’m still working on is believing that I actually look okay, or even…good…in a swimsuit. I’m supposed to (according to our society) look like a Sports Illustrated swimsuit model, and – let’s be honest – I don’t. So if I don’t look like that – the pinnacle of sexy, beachy, bombshell beauty – then I must not look good. Right?
Wrong. So incredibly wrong.
Sports Illustrated model is one form of sexy. One way of looking good in a bathing suit. But why in the hell does it have to be the only way? Newsflash: it’s NOT the only way. There is no wrong way to look in a swimsuit. Sure, maybe some portion of this planet thinks there’s only one way to be beautiful or sexy or worthwhile, in a bathing suit or otherwise.
But fuck that portion of people. Fuck them and their outdated, sexist views on beauty and worth.
The other day I was laying on the bed in my underwear and I looked down at my stomach. It wasn’t completely flat (whatever that means, a stomach can’t really be flat) and it made me upset. I took my hands and pushed down on it, trying to rolling-pin the skin with my palms until it looked taut and toned and whatever. It hurt, like, physically hurt and the pain shot a severe dose of realization through me.
What the hell am I doing? Why do I think my stomach looks better like this? Why is any stomach better than any other? Why is any body considered better than another?
There is no wrong way to have a body. I hope - fervently – that we can all recognize this. I know some times we look in the mirror or compare ourselves to someone else and feel like we’re not good enough. That our bodies aren’t small enough, or curvy enough, or pretty enough.
Our society has created so many arbitrary rules and definitions regarding beauty, and we buy into them every single day. And hell, it’s hard not too buy in when we’re getting bombarded with them constantly.
But please – please, please, please – let’s try to minimize the effects those rules and definitions have on us. Let’s create our own set of rules, staring with THERE ARE NO RULES. There are no rules or rankings when it comes to beauty and bodies and our self-worth. We are all beautiful and worthy, and we all look damn good in a bathing suit because there’s no real way to look bad in one. Put one on your body, tell yourself you look daaaaamn good (because you do), and screw whatever anyone else thinks. Any haters are just playing by a set of limitations they’re too stupid to see past. You’re above and beyond all that.
I love you. Now let’s go to the beach.