Cosmo’s Plus-Sized Cover Doesn’t Glorify Obesity | #ThisGirlEats

The latest issue of women’s magazine Cosmopolitan UK has been causing quite a stir, with plus-sized model Tess Holliday storming the cover in a gorgeous emerald body suit, sultry auburn hair and kick-ass tattoos. She looks fantastic, but the main talking point of her photoshoot has, of course, been her size.

That’s not unexpected; this month’s Cosmo is deliberately provocative, to show that a plus-sized model has as much a place in our fashion mags as anyone else and to get us talking about it. But what has really sparked a social media storm is this: do models like Tess are glorify obesity? Take this tweet from the infuriating obnoxious irritating television presenter Piers Morgan:

Let’s get one thing straight: magazine covers like this won’t make anyone want to be obese. Sure, Tess looks freakin’ incredible but, even so, this is highly unlikely to make anyone think, “oh gosh, I’d really LOVE to be overweight!

And there’s a very simple reason for that. We, as a society, totally snub plus-sized women. The name calling and bullying, the feeling of shame, the being looked down upon, the assumptions (lazy, greedy, poor hygiene, etc.), being deemed unattractive, unwanted and undesirable… who in their right mind would voluntarily sign up for all that?!

As Stephanie Yeboah and Jameela Jamil both point out, larger men with “plus-sized” figures have been featured time and time again on magazine covers, but not once is that up for discussion. No-one questions if they’re unhealthy role models for young people, people aren’t up in arms about them glorying obesity. Is it only women for whom being overweight is bad? Are obese men somehow exempt from the obesity crisis? Once again, we’re left with one rule for men and another for women.

Tess’ Cosmo cover isn’t telling people to go put on weight, or that being overweight is aspirational. It’s showing the world that other bodies do exist, and they deserve love and attention too. It doesn’t say that anyone should be this weight, it just says that every body is beautiful. It’s meant to make us feel good, feel like we can love ourselves instead of putting ourselves – and our bodies – down. It’s body positivity, and lord knows we could do with more of that!


Thin Privilege is DEFINITELY a Thing | #ThisGirlEats

When this term first found its way to me online I thought to myself, “Thin privilege? Surely that’s not a thing? I’ll just have a quick read…” Turns out, it’s a thing. It’s very real, it’s very obvious and it’s very dangerous.

Maybe it’s not the BIGGEST ISSUE EVER – yes, the world has lots of problems right now and it’d be awesome to fix them all but life doesn’t work that way. This is the one I’ve chosen to talk about because I get it. And yes, plenty of overweight people are so because of their own choices. And no, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with a slim figure. So now we’ve cleared all that up, let’s acknowledge that how we perceive people often depends on nothing more than their clothes size and, to me, that is not okay.


Being “privileged” because you’re “thin” doesn’t mean you’ve had it easy. It’s not an all-encompassing phrase. What it means is gaining certain benefits from being thinner, and being relieved of societal pressures that affect overweight people.

For example, those of a smaller figure are more likely to get jobs they interview for; more likely to be the object of affection from potential partners; more likely to be popular among their peers. Fat people, on the other hand, are perceived as too lazy to advance in the workplace; portrayed openly in film and TV as unattractive; often picked on at school. If you think none of this damages someone’s emotional well-being and self-worth, you must be dreaming!

The inclusion of plus-sized and promotion of body positivity has definitely improved, but common beauty standards still essentially say that thinner is better. And because of that, we end up being literally worth our weight. Who says someone bigger isn’t the perfect person for that job? Or great company on a date? Or the best friend you could ever have? It’s all in our heads.

Thinner DOESN’T mean better. It doesn’t mean anything! Size shouldn’t matter this much. What makes up a person is so, so much more than that. I can’t believe we’re still in a position where weight really is so important when there’s honestly so much more to every single one of us.



Read more… (the internet is literally full of this stuff, these are just a few)

Only 15% of hiring managers would consider hiring an overweight woman

Portrayals of Overweight and Obese Individuals on Commercial Television

How Obesity and Bullying Are Connected


Having a Blow Out on Holiday is NOT – I Repeat, NOT – a Crime! | #ThisGirlEats

We’re all obsessed with looks – the right selfie angle, the right shade of highlighter, the right clothes at the right time to the right event. Whatever it is, it’s always something.

For me, it’s body insecurity. Yeah, I know – textbook, right? I’ll spend hours posing in every conceivable (and sometimes inconceivable) position in the mirror before deciding whether I look good, or like a capybara who got lost and accidentally stumbled into Forever 21.

Okay, I’m exaggerating (but not really…).

Don’t even get me started on the summer! Give me sweat and humidity over cold toes and the sniffles any day, but summer brings its own challenges for my internal vanity. New obstacles arise; frizzy hair, shiny skin, chaffing thighs and the thought of shaving my legs on a regular basis keeps me up at night.

Worst of all, it brings on a barrage of what I like to call ‘kick-you-when-you’re-down’ media – you’re still carrying your Easter chocolate weight (it never really goes anyway) and suddenly there are ads and articles everywhere telling you how to get the “perfect bikini bod” for summer. I thought having a bikini body was as simple as, y’unno, having a body and putting a bikini on it 👙 Apparently not…

When you’re on your summer holiday refusing to do anything other than lie flat on your back around the pool for fear of tummy rolls (which every human in the whole entire world has), you really feel the pressure.

IMG_3079When you’re drinking your weight in cocktails, visiting amazing local restaurants and experiencing the glorious all-inclusive buffet for a week, it makes you question yourself. You know how it goes: “Oh god. Look at my body. Look at her body. She looks like Jennifer Lawrence emerging from the sea if James Bond ever decide to do a Doctor Who and go down the vagina route. Look at your enormous bum in those shorts – should you REALLY be digging into another tapas bowl?


Remember, you’re on holiday. On holiday from the grim British weather, from housework, from your job. But also on holiday from yourself. A holiday from that strict diet. A holiday from worrying about what your boyfriend / girlfriend / friends / family / colleagues think. You don’t know anyone there, so who cares?!

You’re allowed to enjoy yourself, to enjoy your food – and I mean enjoy it. Try the local delicacies. Choose the most indulgent ice cream. Sip cocktails you’ve never heard of before. And don’t feel bad about it! Don’t let other people’s bodies get you down. Don’t waste time examining your so-called “bikini body” in the mirror. Holidays are the perfect time to unwind. They’re an escape and, sometimes, escaping from your own mind is the biggest part of it all.