Loose Women Meets Calendar Girls

Hi everyone,

I hope you’re all doing really well and taking advantage of the lovely, sunny weather.

Today I’m posting a piece I wrote back in May, all about body confidence and the Loose Women ‘My Body, My Story’ campaign. I had hoped to upload this a lot earlier and I can only apologise for that – I’ve been so busy! However, seeing as we’re in the middle of summer and the bikinis are coming out in force, I still feel it’s relevant and, as a wider issue, it’s worth talking about regardless. Enjoy!


Loose Women Meets Calendar Girls

The stars of ITV’s daytime panel show ‘Loose Women’ lose their clothes for an inspiring body confidence campaign.

How many of us look in the mirror and only see the things we’d like to change? How many of us, when flicking through a magazine, or watching TV, see a model or celebrity and think ‘I wish I had their [insert favoured body part/physical feature here]? Personally, I think far too many of us do, and apparently I’m not the only one.

As we find ourselves in the throes of bikini season, instead of hiding our bodies away, the combination of heat and sun inspires us to dare to bare – and that’s exactly what the ladies of ITV1’s ‘Loose Women’ did. In a bid to inspire ladies of all ages, shapes and sizes, the ‘My Body, My Story’ campaign saw all the ‘Loose Women’ panellists – from Janet Street Porter to Katie Price – strip down to swimsuits and bare everything, scars and all, for an incredibly inspiring photoshoot.

Shot by – rock royalty turned photographer – Bryan Adams, the resulting campaign is a powerfully untouched image of the ladies smiling, laughing and exuding confidence. No filters, no airbrushing, no editing; nor is it needed. These are real women with real bodies, and they’re all beautiful.

During an especially dedicated ‘body confidence’ edition of the lunchtime panel show – aired on May 2nd 2017 – the ladies made reference to recently released images of Kim Kardashian’s trademark behind, which was shown to be full of dimples and cellulite. Kardashian’s reply? ‘I’m just sitting here on the beach with my flawless body.’ As Janet Street-Porter pointed out during the live broadcast, this shows that Kardashian seems to have a good sense of humour about the situation as she, assumedly, accepts that she isn’t perfect and this is the real her. Fellow panellist Andrea McLean also pointed out that the pictures created some uproar amongst the general public.

*NEWS FLASH* people get cellulite, people gain weight, people get stretch marks, people have scars. As you get older your bum is going to sag, your boobs are going to droop – that’s life. I think all too often people forget that celebrities are just that: people. Just because they’re in the public eye with their faces splashed all over magazines, they aren’t suddenly immune to the effects of ageing.

On a personal level, I have a close friend who is absolutely beautiful inside and out, who is also very conscious of her looks and her weight – and she really needn’t be. As I’m sure is true for all of us, she carried a bit more weight during her teens, but by no means anything to worry about. But, after a – quite frankly – ludicrous comment from an ex-boyfriend, she decided to change how she looked. Nowadays she’s super active; goes to the gym, does pole fitness and ariel hooping – and judging by the videos has a core of absolute steel. However, that one comment still haunts her, and she once told me that when she looks in the mirror she never feels or sees herself as attractive; and that absolutely broke my heart. Sadly though, I think this perception of self is true in a lot of cases.

I grew up in the era when size ‘0’ models were very much a thing and being thin was considered the stereotypical image of beauty. This is something I now know can be very damaging as it’s an unrealistic representation which effects impressionable young people. Singer-songwriter Demi Lovato is an advocate for body positivity who has been very vocal about the effect that this kind of thing had on her growing up; stating in interviews that she wants to see a change and be a healthier role model for young people.

Over the years, I do think we’ve seen an increase in curvy, buxom media personalities, and that the attitude is now more geared towards being healthy. As long as you’re healthy and happy you don’t need to be stick thin and airbrushed to perfection. Be proud. Accept your figure. Wear your scars like a badge of honour.

I once saw a quote online which read: “you’ll never look like the girl in the magazine. The girl in the magazine doesn’t even look like the girl in the magazine.” I think that really hits the nail on the head regarding this subject, as it lays plainly the struggle to achieve some impossible image of perfection often presented to us. This is why the Loose Women ‘My Body, My Story’ campaign is even more powerful as it’s challenging that common perception; they’re standing up and saying ‘We’re real women and this is us; unashamedly, unabashedly, us. We’re beautiful too. ’ And that is something to be admired.

It’s one photograph but it holds such an inspiring message, and I think with it being summer and the bikinis coming out of hibernation, it couldn’t have come at a better time. I hope the campaign encourages more people to stop worrying about what others think and to be confident with their bodies. After all, you only get one body, be kind to yourself and love it.