*Ebony is celebrating the female form with “The Body Brigade,” made up of designer and fashion blogger Gabi Fresh, singer Jazmine Sullivan, singer and actress Danielle Brooks, and singer and reality star Chrisette Michele. The March issue celebrates plus-size beauty while exploring body image struggles in a cover story titled “The Curvy Confessionals.”
The four stars open up about the struggles they still face being plus size women, and they want critics of their physic to check their judgment at the door.
“Those of us who identify as chunky, curvy, plus-size, big, ample, full-figured, BBW, big-boned, thick, voluptuous, heavy-set or fat are fully aware of the obsession-rejection, push-pull, love-hate relationship society has with our physiques,” it reads. “What others may think about what we do or don’t eat doesn’t matter; the greater judgments, regardless of whether they are favorable, come from within.”
The article also compares plus size stereotypes to facts regarding health issues. “Though African-American women have the dubious honor of weighing in as the most obese of any group in the country (recent national data finds that 80 percent of Black women are considered overweight or obese), it’s worth noting that nearly 70 percent of Black men are overweight or obese as well, compared with 71 percent of white men and 63 percent of white women.”
“I’m OK with being seen as ‘big’ ” says GabiFresh.
“I’m a size 14 in dresses, a 16 in pants,” Brooks declares. “Being a woman of curves, I really find that it’s very important to talk about loving your body where you are,” she said during a panel discussion in May. “People’s beauty standards [are] something I’ve definitely struggled with in my life. And I’m just so grateful to be on a show where people love me, Taystee, for who she is – and they’ve come to love Danielle for who I am, and it’s not because I’m a size 2 and it’s not because I’m light-skinned with long hair.”
“What others may think about what we do or don’t eat doesn’t matter; the greater judgments, regardless of whether they are favorable, come from within,” says the writer, Tomika Anderson.