Riverdale star Lili Reinhart was one of the headline speakers at this year’s Glamour Women of the Year event. In her thoughtful speech, she tackled topics related to her own self-image, and the need for more women to champion notions of imperfection as part of what makes someone beautiful.
Lili started her speech talking about wanting to be open with others about her struggles with fluctuating body weight, but how she had received criticism from some for even bringing up the topic of body image.
I’ve faced criticism in the past for talking about my body image. People told me that I didn’t have the right to talk about being self-conscious about my body because I was “skinny.” And I understand how it seems inappropriate for someone who is average size to talk about problems with weight-gain.
But my point is that I didn’t think that anything was wrong with my body until I was in an industry that rewards and praises people for having a smaller waist than I will ever have. And it felt unfair to think that I would never have an industry-perfect body just because I wasn’t genetically built a certain way.”
Lili began noticing her body weight fluctuating just as she became more of a public figure. So she found herself becoming obsessed with monitoring the changes all of the time, as if they were a horrible problem.
I became hyper aware of my changing body. I could see the difference in my shape in photos and wondered if anyone else was noticing. I felt this strange constant struggle of having to live up to the of the expectation of the appearance that I had already established to the world.
So I found myself examining my body constantly in the mirror. Sometimes thinking, okay, like I was being too hard on myself, everything’s fine, still the same size. And then, I’d go back and look in the mirror a couple hours later and my stomach looked completely different. So I was thinking, is my reflection lying to me? How can my body look so different over the course of one day? And why do I feel like I need to apologize to the world for my ever-changing self?
I didn’t want the world to think I was catfishing them with my appearance.”
Ultimately, Lili shared some things in her speech that she has resolved to do to not contribute to system that makes any woman feel like she needs to attain to unrealistic standards of beauty or hide imperfections. And she talked about some things she has done in her own life to feel more comfortable with the realities of her body in an industry that pressures young women to try to look “perfect.”
You can check out Lili’s speech in the video below.
(Image source: Youtube)
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