Every year, the pressure is on to get a “summer body.” That means new diets and endless workouts to make sure our bodies mimic the ones of models we see on our Instagram feeds. But here’s the thing: Every body is a summer body. And while we know that the path to self-love is long and complicated, we firmly believe it’s time to do away with the idea of the “perfect” body and instead focus on being our healthiest and most confident selves. So this summer (and always, for that matter), let’s flaunt our bodies as we please, wear whatever we want, and throw all those impossible standards straight into the trash. Here’s why the College Fashionista community is joining us in supporting each other along the road to acceptance and ditching the term “summer body” once and for all.
“The concept of attaining a ‘summer body’ has increased with the presence of social media and altering photos. We spend so much time on our phones looking at these Instagram models, wondering How can I look like her? when, in reality, sometimes the photo has been edited. The perfect summer body is the body you love yourself in.” — Allison Paananen, California State University, Sacramento class of 2018
“My first experience with body image came in seventh grade when I was shamed for being too thin. At the same time, I was shaming myself for being too fat. In high school, I began to obsess over the idea of the ‘summer body’ and tell myself I shouldn’t be in a bikini unless my body was supermodel perfect. In college, that idea evolved to the ‘spring break’ body and even the ‘Halloween body.’
“I have learned that my body will not always be the ‘perfect’ body [by society’s standards], so it has become important to me that instead of worrying about being small, I want my body to be healthy and strong.” — anonymous student
“I wish the idea of a perfect body would just be replaced with a movement to eat healthy and workout for health and internal happiness instead of physical results.” — Aayesha Poudel, Virginia Commonwealth University class of 2021
“A ‘summer body’ is just you in the summer in whatever it is you like to wear.” — Jess Richardsen, Savannah College of Art and Design class of 2020
“I believe that everyone should feel confident in their skin. If I could say something to someone struggling to get a ‘summer body,’ I say you are beautiful simply because you are alive. Our bodies do so much for us, and it’s important to appreciate and be grateful for what we have.” — Katie Croy, James Madison University class of 2019
“Everyone’s body type is different. We should push each other to be body positive in taking care of what’s inside first, and it will show on the outside.” — Diana Kempf, Liberty University class of 2020
What are your thoughts on the term “summer body”? Let us know in the comments below!
Opening image by Natalie Crawford.