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Let’s state the obvious because it’s 2023 and we’re tired of seeing body-shaming comments: body-shaming is never okay. No one is “too big,” “too small,” or anything in between. Bodies are beautiful things: they carry you around every day and even carry new life inside them. We don’t understand how people can shame any type of body: pregnant bodies, post-pregnancy bodies, bodies that have gained weight, bodies that have lost weight — but you name it, and the trolls out there have done it. Celebrities deal with scrutiny on the daily, and sadly, a lot of that scrutiny ends up being focused on their bodies.
Stars like Kourtney Kardashian Barker, Kate Winslet, Simone Biles, and, recently, Yellowjackets star Melanie Lynskey have all spoken out about the body-shaming comments they’ve faced — and their experiences will make you more determined than ever to shut down this trend in 2022. Of course, progress has been made in recent decades, even if it doesn’t always feel that way. We all remember the days when it was impossible to check out at a grocery store without seeing a tabloid tearing down an actress with a so-called “unflattering” photo — while these days, many of those features have been replaced by love letters to the female form and an unabashed embrace of features like stretch marks, rolls, or curves that might once have been deemed “flaws.”
But even as progress rolls forward, stars out in the spotlight today still face comments from those who believe there’s a “right” and “wrong” way for a body to look, and they don’t deserve it. From Adele to Beyoncé, Jennifer Lopez, Rebel Wilson, and more, we love seeing our favorite celebrity women calling out the body-shaming trolls left and right. Check out some more celebrities who called out body-shamers and embraced their bodies below!
If you or someone you love is struggling with disordered eating, you are not alone and you can get help. Head over to National Eating Disorder Association (NEDA) or call or text their hotline (800) 931-2237.
A version of this article was originally posted on 2021.
“God is Woman” singer Ariana Grande took to TikTok to address the body-shaming comments that have recently been made about her slimmed-down shape. “I think we should be gentler and less comfortable commenting on people’s bodies no matter what,” she said. “There are ways to compliment someone or to ignore something that you see that you don’t like, that I think we should help each other work towards. We should aim toward being safer and keeping each other safer.”
“The body that you’ve been comparing my current body to was the unhealthiest version of my body,” Grande continued. “I was on a lot of antidepressants and drinking on them and eating poorly and at the lowest point of my life when I looked the way you consider my healthy. But that in fact wasn’t my healthy. There are many different ways to look healthy and beautiful.”
She then concluded, “I think you’re beautiful. No matter what you’re going through. No matter what weight, no matter how you like to do your makeup these days, no matter what cosmetic procedures you’ve had or not or anything.”
Kourtney Kardashian Barker
After posting a since-deleted photo of herself promoting her new Lemme vitamins, Kourtney Kardashian Barker replied to a user who asked if she was pregnant. “The after affects [sic] of IVF (I only acknowledge this comment bc I do think it’s important to know how IVF affects women’s bodies and it’s not spoken about much),” she responded, per Page Six. She added, “also are we still asking women if they’re pregnant? 💛”
Following Melanie Lynskey’s appearance on the HBO hit The Last of Us, the actress received criticism from former America’s Next Top Model winner Adrianne Curry. “Her body says life of luxury not post apocalyptic [sic] warlord,” Curry wrote on social media, per Page Six.
Not long after, Lynskey went to Twitter to defend her (and her character’s) body. “I understand that some people are mad that I’m not the typical casting for this role,” she wrote. “That’s thrilling to me. Other than the moments after action is called, when you feel like you’re actually in someone else’s body, the most exciting part of my job is subverting expectations.” She continued, “I wanted her to look like she should have a notepad on her at all times. I wanted her to be feminine, and soft-voiced, and all the things that we’ve been told are “weak”. Because honestly, f*** that.” We love to hear it, Melanie!
Melanie Lynskey (Again)
Yellowjackets star Melanie Lynskey recently opened up to Rolling Stone about how a member of the show’s production rudely asked her about her weight. “They were asking me, ‘What do you plan to do? I’m sure the producers will get you a trainer. They’d love to help you with this.'” She also opened up about her past eating disorder, saying, “There’s sort of an implicit expectation of perfection because everybody looks the same. But I had a bad eating disorder for 10 years, and even when I was like 58 kilograms [128 pounds], I would still be shamed in wardrobe fittings for not being sample size.”
Brooke Shields recently told SheKnows about how motherhood has changed her body image. “I was never skinny [in the modeling world]. I was always told I was too big. When I got pregnant, and I had to feed this baby, and I had to be bigger, I finally started reveling in the fact that I had this body that was going to carry this thing,” she said. “The first time I stepped outside of myself, and didn’t compare myself to other people — because when you’re in your mind, [in the modeling] industry, it’s all about comparison … Everything’s about what you’re not. It’s rarely [about] the way you [actually] are. [Pregnancy] was the first time that I actually [loved] all of my body, and then appreciated my face … And I think I always thought that beauty was an indulgence instead of a valued part of your existence.”
Over her career, Gigi Hadid has been called “too skinny” and “fat,” literally opposite ends of the spectrum. But she doesn’t let it get her down, in fact, she educates the haters, telling Allure, “For those of you so determined to come up w why my body has changed over the years, you may not know that when I started @ 17 I was not yet diagnosed w/Hashimoto’s disease; those of u who called me ‘too big for the industry’ were seeing inflammation & water retention due to that.”
Emma Stone called out people saying she was “too skinny,” saying to USA Today, “I firmly believe that nothing really affects you or can really bother you if you don’t already feel that way about yourself. I’ve seen a lot of comments that say, ‘Eat a sandwich’ or ‘She looks sick.’ I’ve been looking at myself in the mirror being mean to myself. I’m not sick. I eat sandwiches….In no way is it my intention to be a bad example.”
Chloë Grace Moretz
Chloë Grace Moretz recalled a moment in a 2017 interview with Variety where her male co-star said he would never date her because she was “too big.” She said it “makes you realize that there are some really bad people out there, and for some reason, he felt the need to say that to me. You have to kind of forgive and not forget, really, but it was just like, wow. It was jarring.”
She opened up later about Family Guy making fun of her body, along with the viral photoshopped meme about her. “I think the big thing is that compassion is a really key thing in humanity and just being kind with the words that you say with one another, the things you say online. I think compassion is key and I hope that the world can have a little bit more of that,” she said to NY Post.
In one of the most iconic clap backs in Twitter history, trolls tried to come at actress Gabourey Sidibe for her weight. Then she tweeted, “To people making mean comments about my GG pics, I [most definitely] cried about it on that private jet on my way to my dream job last night. #JK.”
Kim Kardashian has been body-shamed for years, from her plastic surgery to her post-pregnancy body. Kardashian said to the We Are Supported By… podcast, per US Magazine, that the comments about her weight during pregnancy hurt so much. But her candidness resonated with a lot of people. She started by saying, “It killed my self-esteem. … I would sit at home and cry all the time.” But she wrote on her website, per Elle, that she is proud of herself and her body. “I am empowered by my body. I am empowered by my sexuality. I am empowered by feeling comfortable in my skin. I am empowered by showing the world my flaws and not being afraid of what anyone is going to say about me. And I hope that through this platform I have been given, I can encourage the same empowerment for girls and women all over the world.”
Back in 2012, Jennifer Lawrence told Elle: “In Hollywood I’m obese. I’m considered a fat actress.” Lawrence got her revenge by training hard to look fit and strong for her Hunger Games roles, and by raising awareness about what goes on behind the scenes in Hollywood. Lawrence told Harper’s Bazaar UK that she was told by people in the industry (when she was younger) that she was fat. Now Lawrence has an attitude we should all emulate. She told the magazine, “Today, if anybody even tries to whisper the word ‘diet,’ I’m like, ‘You can go f*** yourself.'”
Back in the ages where tabloids were covered with criticisms of women’s bodies in bikinis, they made the mistake of attacking Tyra Banks. On her TV show, The Tyra Banks Show, she made a huge speech about how people who shame her or other women like her can “kiss [her] ass.”
Growing up, Kate Winslet told Women and Hollywood that she was body-shamed by her fellow students, saying that the kids would bully her for the way she looked, calling her “blubber.” But she had the last laugh when she became a legendary, Oscar-winning actress.
Back in 2017, after Lady Gaga’s performance for the Super Bowl, many were quick to say awful things to her about her body. But she had some strong words to say right back. She took it to Instagram, saying, “I heard my body is a topic of conversation so I wanted to say, I’m proud of my body and you should be proud of yours too. No matter who you are or what you do. I could give you a million reasons why you don’t need to cater to anyone or anything to succeed. Be you, and be relentlessly you. That’s the stuff of champions. thank you so much everyone for supporting me. I love you guys.”
It’s hard to believe that when Jennifer Aniston first started out, her agent suggested she drop some weight, and that is just what she did — 30 pounds, to be exact. But since then, even if she gains one pound, people assume she’s pregnant. In 2016, she wrote a powerful essay in The Huffington Post saying, “For the record, I am not pregnant. What I am is fed up. I’m fed up with the sport-like scrutiny and body shaming that occurs daily under the guise of ‘journalism,’ the ‘First Amendment’ and ‘celebrity news.'”
Ugly Betty star America Ferrera wrote a letter to her body back in 2017 for her 33rd birthday. Per Allure, she posted a love letter to her body on Instagram, saying, “At 33, I finally understand that my body is a miracle! After too many years of criticizing, punishing, depriving, or neglecting my body for what it isn’t, I’m attempting to love it unapologetically as it is!”
Kelly Osbourne told Fabulous per US Magazine a few years back that she still gets fat-shamed, no matter what she does with her body. “I’m the thinnest I’ve ever been and the healthiest I’ve ever been. The totally insane thing is that I’m a U.K. size 4 to 6 and people still say I’m fat. I mean it’s crazy but I’ve had this all my life and I just try and ignore it.”
Proud mama Jessica Simpson has been body-shamed for decades, with many tabloids in the early 2000s referring to her as “Jumbo Jessica” — per this 1999 article from Page Six. But Simpson was targeted the most when she was pregnant. She told Redbook back in 2014, “I never listen to it, no matter who the press talks about when they’re pregnant. It’s ridiculous and unfair. I think any woman who is pregnant and creating a life is pretty much entitled to eat whatever she wants as long as she’s healthy.”
Something a lot of people seem to forget about American Idol singer Kelly Clarkson is that when she won the first season of the show, she was only 20 — still a baby in this world. Yet today, people still have the nerve to compare her body then to now, the body of a woman. But Clarkson doesn’t have time for shamers. In 2017, a Twitter troll tweeted that Clarkson was fat and she responded, “…and still f**king awesome.”
Chrissy Teigen is sadly no stranger to internet trolls attacking her post-pregnancy body. But she has proven time and time again through Twitter that she’s sassy, classy, and doesn’t give a damn what the trolls think.
Kate Upton put the haters in their place by more or less ignoring them. A couple of years ago a snarky blogger wrote that Upton has “huge thighs, no waist, big fat floppy boobs, terrible body definition — she looks like a squishy brick” and then asked, “Is this what American women are ‘striving’ for now?” Without saying a word, Upton answered the author’s question by appearing year after year in the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue.
Okay, people owe Alicia Silverstone an apology. Back when she was cast in the 1997 film Batman & Robin, the actress was a victim of body-shaming. In a 1996 Entertainment Weekly article, critics said she looked “more Babe than babe,” referring to the fictional pig. Back in Oct 2021, Silverstone duetted a TikTok video, thanking a fan for calling out the fat-shamers — and it’s heart-warming as heck.
The tennis champion Serena Williams has been shamed on social media for her strong arms and build, with many saying she was “built like a man.” But per the TODAY Show in 2017, Williams said “It isn’t always easy to be on the stage playing a tournament and have someone making a comment about your body, that it’s too strong… [but] I don’t let anything break me.”
Along with Serena Williams, gold-medalist Simone Biles gets body-shaming trolls unfairly attacking her “masculine” figure. Back in 2016, Biles tweeted that she doesn’t care what trolls have to say. “you all can judge my body all you want, but at the end of the day it’s MY body. I love it & I’m comfortable in my skin.”
Drew Barrymore has faced harassment since the 1990s, garnering criticism for her changing body. In a 2018 interview with StyleCaster, she said she just owns her changing body and tells it like it is. “I’d gained a bunch of weight, and I was in a restaurant, and a woman goes, ‘God, you have so many kids.’ And I was like, ‘Well, two.’ And she goes, ‘And obviously one on the way.’ I looked at her and, for the first time in my life, I go, ‘No, I’m just f**king fat.'”
Sadly, Kim isn’t the only Kardashian that’s been victimized by body shaming. In 2016, Khloé Kardashian called out the double standards she faces in a tweet, per People saying, “I need to remember the date today!! Never would I have ever thought I would be in the media for being ‘too skinny.’ What on earth?!?!… First I’m too fat and now I’m too skinny. I love this game!!”
Ashley Graham is one of the biggest people in the entertainment world when it comes to body positivity. With every other Instagram post and tweet, she proudly shows off her real body — from every pregnancy stretch mark to cellulite.
Body positivity icon Adele has sadly faced body-shaming trolls since her career beginnings in 2006. Most recently, she received an onslaught of hate for unveiling the body she worked hard to create, saying it’s her body and her choice to Vogue UK.
“They’re used to people documenting everything on Instagram, and most people in my position would get a big deal with a diet brand. I couldn’t [care less]. I did it for myself and not anyone else. So why would I ever share it? I don’t find it fascinating. It’s my body.”
Pitch Perfect alum Rebel Wilson is another star who faced an abundance of trolls after her sudden weight loss. Per YourTango, Wilson once said, “There are so many glamorous actresses — but in the real world, nobody looks like that. I want to inspire people who don’t think they’re cool or pretty.”
Okay, why did people think Renee Zellweger was overweight in Bridget Jones’ Diary? We have no idea, but we do know that Zellweger knows how to clap back gracefully, per a powerful essay she published on Huffington Post.
“Too skinny, too fat, showing age, better as a brunette, cellulite thighs, facelift scandal, going bald, fat belly or bump?” she wrote. “Ugly shoes, ugly feet, ugly smile, ugly hands, ugly dress, ugly laugh; headline material which emphasizes the implied variables meant to determine a person’s worth, and serve as parameters around a very narrow suggested margin within which every one of us must exist in order to be considered socially acceptable and professionally valuable, and to avoid painful ridicule.”
Amy Schumer faced a lot of body shamers throughout her career, so she fought back by sharing some sexy bikini pictures that prove she loves herself despite the haters. In one swimsuit post on Instagram, she wrote a heartfelt speech about body shaming, saying, “Is it fat shaming if you know you’re not fat and have zero shame in your game? I don’t think so. I am strong and proud of how I live my life and say what I mean and fight for what I believe in and I have a blast doing it with the people I love.”
Kristen Bell told Redbook in a 2013 interview that she doesn’t care about body shamers criticizing her baby weight. “I am not a woman whose self-worth comes from her dress size…Comparison is one long, agonizing death and does not interest me at all.” Since then, she’s been very vocal about body acceptance, and loving that post-baby bump.
In an interview with Shape, Beyoncé said her song “Bootylicious” is a love song for celebrating “curves and women’s bodies.” She said, “I wrote that because, at the time, I’d gained some weight and the pressure that people put you under, the pressure to be thin, is unbelievable. I was just 18 and you shouldn’t be thinking about that. You should be thinking about building up your character and having fun, and the song was just telling everyone to forget what people are saying, you’re bootylicious.”
Back in 2017, proud mama and Lizzie McGuire alum Hilary Duff posted to her Instagram a photo of her in a swimsuit, showing her love for her body. “I am posting this on behalf of young girls, women, and mothers of all ages… Since websites and magazines love to share ‘celeb flaws’ — well I have them! My body has given me the greatest gift of my life: Luca, 5 years ago… Ladies, let’s be proud of what we’ve got and stop wasting precious time in the day wishing we were different, better, and unflawed.”
Like Jennifer Aniston, Jennifer Lopez was told to lose weight at the beginning of her career. She told E! “They kept telling me to lose weight… I was like, ‘No I don’t. If I lose any more weight it won’t be me.’ You know what I mean?”
Alyssa Milano will never let a bully get away with it and in 2013, when a comedian named Jay Mohr joked about her weight, she gave a super classy response. She tweeted, “@jaymohr37 So sorry you felt the need to publicly fat-shame me. Be well and God Bless. Please send my love to your beautiful wife.”
Sadly, Melissa McCarthy has faced a lot of body-shaming in her life, but she only responds with love and happiness. Killing them with kindness is her motto, saying in an interview with New York Times. “I felt really bad for someone who is swimming in so much hate. I just thought, that’s someone who’s in a really bad spot, and I am in such a happy spot. I laugh my head off every day with my husband and my kids who are mooning me and singing me songs.”
Earlier in 2021, Hot in Cleveland alum Valerie Bertinelli uploaded a tearful video responding to the haters, saying sarcastically, per Closer Weekly, “Because see, I don’t have a scale or I don’t have clothes that I’m trying to put on every day, and I don’t have mirrors, so I don’t see what’s become of me. So, I needed that help to let me know that I need to lose weight.” She ended it by saying, “You’re not being helpful.”
Rihanna is the definition of sass and class. Back in 2017, people tried to fat-shame the Fenty Beauty founder, and of course, failed miserably. Per TIME, she responded with a hilarious meme saying, “If you can’t handle me at my 2007 Gucci Mane, you don’t deserve me at my 2017 Gucci Mane.”
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