Proud2Bme | 5 Ways to Challenge "Bikini Body" Talk

  • Body Image
  • Body Positivity

5 Ways to Challenge "Bikini Body" Talk

Nearly 60% of you said that the body talk around you this time of year is constant. Everyone seems to be stressing about the start of "bikini season." Is it possible to keep a healthy perspective?

Yes, it can be done! And we've got you covered--so you don't have to stay covered up all summer.

1. Focus on the fun. All those summertime activities that are right around the corner? They are supposed to be enjoyable, people! Vacations, beach-going, hanging with friends...Cue the soundtrack. Oh, but the "do I look fat?" voiceover doesn't really work with this frolicking feel-good montage. It's kind of a downer, actually.

2. Remember that you won't be the only one stressing. It's a sad but perhaps slightly comforting truth. You might imagine that every person you encounter in your state of semi-undress will be eyeing your thighs for any and all traces of dimples or cellulite. In fact, it's more likely that they'll all be too preoccupied with their own worry that you're sizing them up.

3. Don't diet. More than half of teen girls resort to unhealthy dieting and other extreme (and extremely unhealthy) behaviors to lose weight. While not every teen who goes on a diet will develop an eating disorder, many teens who have eating disorders started by dieting. And here's the kicker: diets don't work. An overwhelming majority of people who lose weight by dieting will gain it back. So tune out all noise about how you can get a slammin' bikini body in five minutes. Those are empty--and dangerous--promises.  

4. Wear what makes you feel comfortable and confident. Do you like to swim in the ocean without fear of waves knocking microscopic fabric triangles off your chest? Well, maybe the itsy-bitsy, teeny-weeny string bikini isn't your speed. Don't worry about trends. One piece, two-piece, yellow polka dots or gold lamé--it's all about what works for you.

5. Surround yourself with some body positivity. If you own a phone, computer, or happen to enjoy leaving your house on occasion, it will be pretty much impossible to completely escape the "bikini season" mania. But you can take some active steps to ensure that fat talk, comparisons, and bodysnark aren't taking over your social media feeds and dominating your conversations. Check out our Q&A with body image expert Cynthia Bulik for advice on how to stop the snark and these great tips on how to build a body positive presence online.

How do YOU handle the bikini body pressure?


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Proud2Bme is an online community created by and for teens. We cover everything from fashion and beauty to news, culture, and entertainment—all with the goal of promoting positive body image and encouraging healthy attitudes about food and weight.

This site was developed in partnership with Riverduinen and made possible by generous contributions from JPMorgan Chase, Globant, the University of Delaware, and The Hilda & Preston Davis Foundation.

Proud2Bme was first launched in the Netherlands by Riverduinen, a mental health organization that has licensed the concept to the National Eating Disorders Association. Unless otherwise noted, all original content on this site is copyright The National Eating Disorders Association. The Proud2Bme brand, logos, and trademarks are property of Rivierduinen.