Despite writing a book about body confidence and how to embrace your insecurities, Tess Holiday will be the first to admit that she doesn’t take her advice 100-percent of the time. The 32-year-old model recently opened up to Shape about lingering insecurities with her appearance and the genius way she maintains body confidence.
In the interview, The Not So Subtle Art of Being A Fat Girl author explained that she has self-esteem issues like anyone else, even if she’s touted as one of the leaders in body diversity. “People think that since I literally wrote the book on how to love yourself that I love myself all the time, but I don’t,” Holiday said. “Sometimes I love it all and sometimes I pick everything apart”
The curvy model admitted that she’s currently experiencing insecurities with her stomach after welcoming a child via cesarian section a year and a half ago. “Right now I’m having a hard time loving my stomach, because I had a kid a year and a half ago. My body is still not quite the same because I had a C-section,” Holiday said.
However, Holiday isn’t one to hide her insecurities. Instead, she forces herself to choose clothes that highlight them, no matter how uncomfortable she might feel, in order to encourage herself to embrace her insecurities. The philosophy is what inspired Holiday to start her Instagram campaign #EffYourBeautyStandards, to inspire people to embrace their insecurities and ignore social standards of beauty, too.
“In those moments when I’m having a hard time, I’ll try to wear something that scares me. I’ll wear a crop top if I’m not loving my stomach because it kind of forces me to pay attention to it and to love it, really,” Holiday said. “That’s why I started Eff Your Beauty Standards. It was all about me saying ‘Do you have something that scares you? If so, show it off.'”
We get it. Wearing clothes that put your insecurities on display is scary—terrifying, even—but it’s also a body-confident to embrace them and communicate to others that their insecurities are worth embracing too. Plus, whatever Holiday is preaching, we’re listening.