I recently discussed international beauty trends and the strong correlation between weight management and successful adulting in general. In many cultures (African included), your ability to manage your weight and physical appearance speaks volumes about a your capacity to maintain your personal and professional life proficiently.
True in theory, but rubbish in real life
Thankfully, my professional success doesn’t hinge on my ability to manage my weight, as I’ve been overweight for pretty much most of my life and still managed to sort of make it. I’ve fluctuated between thick, fit and fat, and although I’ve never lost the desire to want to better myself, I’ve always been fond myself regardless of my size. It hasn’t held me back, as far as I’m aware.
Whilst I do think being attractive improves people’s inclination to gravitate towards you, I outright disagree that good looks are a direct reflection of good life management overall.
Fat femmes now have a seat at the table
Being overweight (and black) automatically excludes fat femmes like me from several conversations and exchanges in pop culture – and even dating. The funny thing is, most of the time, I feel perfectly fine about myself, and only uncomfortable when I discover how savage and judgmental people can be towards each other about weight. I hear someone say something hurtful about someone else and assume they could think negative things about me too. I guess this is just a sad way that as humans, we are mean to mask our own shitty insecurities.
But seriously, have you ever asked yourself what your body goals are? Not comparing it with Draya Michelle or the plethora of beautiful’bad b***hes online. Not thinking about what would make you most attractive, employable, date-worthy or accepted…but instead, the body type that you physically and mentally respond best to?
When you think about being our own body goals, what does that really look and feel like for you? Because that’s what I’m striving towards. What feels right for me, and treating other people with that same degree of self-awareness and respect.
For that reason I’m sharing some of the fat femme queens of both social and traditional media who are brilliant, bold and bountiful.These women are so authentic in who they are, the characters they play and their approach to being unapologetically imperfect in an imperfect world. .
Honestly, at almost 30 I’m so much more accepting of who I am. I don’t always feel fashionable, sexy or confident, and yet, sometimes, some of my most creative outputs and funniest jokes spring forth from those kind of moods. I’m ok with not being on fleek all the time.
MY MENTAL MANTRAS: I’m going to feel comfortable at the gym, I’m going to enjoy eating fatty foods in public if I want, I’m not going to cover up because being big makes me over-sexualised, and I will never assume that the guy prefers the skinnier girl.
Skinny Girl in Transit and jogging on the Lekki Bridge
Tiwa in (SGIT) is literally me without all of Nigeria’s hot guys fighting for my attention.
This is a super funny, relatable webisode now in Season 3. It’s about Tiwa a 29 year old budding radio producer, who like many of my friends in Lagos, starts her weight loss and right-life campaign by jogging on the Lekki Bridge; which is where all the drama begins!
Week by week, I love following her on her journey to self definition and discovery. Like I said, I’m not a skinny girl hopeful but I can totally relate to the drama she faces, from work-life, dating, food and having African parents.
Yes now, big black girls killing it at yoga!
Self-confessed fat femme Jessamyn Stanley completely changed the game for me when it comes to yoga. The first thing I thought when I saw her practically doing a handstand held up by her index finger (slight exaggeration) – was ‘damn’ if she can do it, why can’t?I!!
And therein lies the trouble with not having images of people who look similar to you doing positive things! It’s so important, and I no longer see yoga as an exercise that I’m desperately trying to shoe horn myself into, but rather just another thing in this life that I can slay.
THICKLeeyonce – Being your own body goals
ThickLeeyonce is my latest Instagram obsession. She’s a photgrapher, digital influencer and co-partner to South African plus-size fashion label Lee Bex. Her Instagram page is so good for big busted and booty packed women like me who struggle to apply the latest fashion to their frame.
The sad thing about Instagram is so much of our appreciation gets lost in infinite scrolling, which is why I wanted to give her a shout out on this post, and share some of her body positive iniatives to the world.