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jessicawalmsley
3rd October 2020

Truth Hurts: Lizzo says body positivity has become too ‘commercialised’ in the media

Lizzo wants to raise awareness about the body positivity movement and how it has become too commercialised on social media
Truth Hurts: Lizzo says body positivity has become too ‘commercialised’ in the media
Andy Witchger @ Flickr

Celebrated singer Lizzo known best for her song ‘Juice’ and her phenomenal flute playing skills has openly talked to Vogue magazine about her thoughts surrounding the body positivity movement and how it has become a trend in social media.

Her message is relevant right now in the UK as well. Boris Johnson has been particularly vocal about the implications of being overweight, especially in regards to the coronavirus and its higher risk for people that are obese.

Lizzo is a modern advocate for people of any race, size and gender to love and accept their body. She is currently on the cover of Vogue and is the first “big black woman” to be the cover model for the magazine.

Hype Williams @ Vogue

The flute player and Grammy Awards winner has asserted her dominance in the music industry as well as on social media. She hopes to use her platform to normalise bigger bodies and inspire those who struggle to identify with influencers and figures in the media to love and normalise their figures.

However, as with most trends in the media, Lizzo believes what began as the body positivity movement has been changed by the media.

“Girls with back fat, girls with bellies that hang, girls with thighs that aren’t separated, that overlap,” she said. “Girls with stretch marks. You know, girls who are in the 18-plus club.”

“They need to be benefiting from… the mainstream effect of body positivity now. But with everything that goes mainstream, it gets changed. It gets – you know, it gets made acceptable.”

According to Lizzo, all bodies should be viewed as normal in the media –  she wants those who are plus-sized to be treated like others rather than categorised as brave, confident, and body positive.

Fast fashion brands have faced criticism for not having a diverse variety of models on websites and advertising campaigns but Missguided, a Manchester-based fast fashion brand, has recently partnered with charity Models of Diversity which strives to give inspirational and diverse women a place in the media.

Tallulah Guard, UoM feminist collective’s LGBTQ+ Rep, echoed Lizzo’s opinion: “It’s clear that the original bodies this movement was for have been pushed out by mainly white, sub size 16 women. There’s too much posed/unposed and bloated/unbloated and not enough real, bigger bodies of a range of shapes.

“Shape normalisation is a massive area that needs exploring, for bodies of all sizes. And we need women who’ve had mastectomies, women with stoma bags, intersex people. There’s so much to be done.”

Jess Walmsley

Jess Walmsley

Editor-in-Chief 21/22

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