It's officially summer time and, for must of us, it's bittersweet. On one hand, you want to go to the beach with your friends and lounge around in the sun or maybe play some beach volleyball but on the other hand, you don't feel like your beach body is at its best and staying inside watching TV sounds less humiliating. With all of the celebrities in magazines and super thin models on Instagram and the runway, it's easy to feel like your bikini body just isn't good enough to hit the beach. Here's the thing though: all you need to do to have a bikini body is to put on a bikini. That's it! Wasn't that simple?
Though you may be discouraged when you see the celebrities with their Photoshopped, airbrushed, and re-touched bods, it's important to remember that nobody really looks like that. If they did, they'd all look like giant Barbies which is pretty horrifying if you think about it. So don't be discouraged, just remember that celebrities have normal human bodies and each of them are different and beautiful in their own way. Some are thin, some are curvy, some are short, some are tall, some have big bosoms, some have itty-bitties, some have big booties, and some have little ones. They are all beautiful in their own way. These are all of the beautiful celebs who love their bodies just the way they are.
15 Amber Rose
Amber Rose always seems to feel great about her bikini body and why shouldn't she? She looks great! She is all about owning your body and doing what you want with it--not what anyone else wants. So whether you want to wear a bikini to the beach or you'd rather rock a one-piece or maybe a cute cover-up, you should do whatever makes you comfortable. While she may flaunt her curvaceous figure, she doesn't seem too bothered by a few extra pounds or a bad angle. The model, talk show host, entrepreneur, and mommy of one, is very outspoken on her views about feminism and body positivity and has even led a Walk which aims to help empower and honor women who are bullied or judged for what they do with their own body.
14 Ariel Winter
Ariel Winter may be young (she's only 19 years old) but she is a great role model for young women because of her body positivity and healthy outlook on life. Though she was subjected to ridicule and bullying when she got a chest reduction when she was only 17 years old. She told People magazine that having such a large bust on her small frame was "ostracizing and excruciatingly painful." Though she was objectified and judged for the decision, she stood her ground and did what was best for her body. She said that it was tough for her at first to come to terms with her full figure, she now loves her curves thanks to her Modern Family costar, Sofia Vergara. Everybody needs a role model!
13 Anita Marshall
Anita Marshall is what some people call a "plus-size model" but "normal-size model" sounds way better and a lot more accurate. Or she could just be called a "model" because that's exactly what she is. Isn't it so unfair that when a model isn't a size 0, she's automatically labeled a plus-size model? Thankfully, times are changing and women with curves are finally being accepted and celebrated. Marshall is a size 16 and she's totally killing it as a model. She's appeared on the cover of multiple magazines and modeled for Macy’s, Nordstrom, and Monif C. When she was interviewed by Essence and asked which of her features she loved most is she replied, "My curves. I LOVE MY CURVES!" We love your curves too, girl!
12 Elizabeth Moss
Elizabeth Moss has been nabbing Emmy nominations for her performance in Mad Men almost every year since 2009 but she has yet to win one. She was just nominated for her performance in The Handmaid's Tale and maybe this year is finally her year to win. Even though she hasn't won an Emmy, she's won our hearts with every role and she's definitely won when it comes to beach body goals. She looks cool and relaxed in her dark shades and swimsuits, soaking up some sun while on vacation. She doesn't adhere to Hollywood's standards and while she may not be a size 0, she looks like she's totally comfortable with her body and embraces her curves. You don't need abs to look hot--there's nothing wrong with having a soft tummy!
11 Kamie Crawford
Kamie Crawford won the Miss Teen USA pageant in 2010 and as she's grown up, she's embraced her curvy figure and she is a successful model. Her latest campaign was for Target swimwear which features beautiful models of all shapes and sizes. Plus all of the models' bods are totally airbrush-free. Crawford's curves look amazing in her high-waisted bikinis which flatter her figure very well. Finally some swimsuits for gals who aren't a size 0! Though in 2010 when she became Miss Teen USA, she was a few pounds lighter than she is now but now she is all grown up and totally embracing her womanly curves while being a great role model to young women. She looks very healthy and very happy. Who needs Photoshop when you look great and feel great about yourself?
10 Rebel Wilson
Instead of wearing a bikini, Rebel Wilson is going for the mermaid look in a short film that was a part of The New York Times Hollywood Heroines piece in 2012. The Pitch Perfect star looks dreamy in her mermaid ensemble and she proves that you don't have to be a size zero to be mesmerizing. Rebel is a rebel by defying Hollywood standards and making it as a successful star while also being true to herself. She is a great role model when it comes to body positivity and she even has her own plus-size clothing line! She is totally comfortable in her own skin and she told Access Hollywood that girls shouldn't be comparing themselves to Victoria's Secret models, "Even though they are called 'models,' they’re not the best people to model yourself after."
9 Kelly Brook
Kelly Brook is an English model and actress who is known for her good-looks and great figure. Though she has said that she doesn't look like stereotypical models like Gisele Bundchen, she is very proud of her curves. In an interview with British Glamour magazine, she said "I don’t look like Gisele. But there’s someone out there for everyone to look up to and emulate. So if I’m the curvy one, that’s fine by me, I don’t mind." Every body is different and they should all be celebrated. The 37 year-old model may not look like a 6-foot tall supermodel but that doesn't mean that she's not beautiful. No one should hold themselves to the standards of a supermodel and even supermodels aren't completely flawless. However, your body is most beautiful when you feel happy, comfortable, and healthy in it.
8 Cheryl Burke
Cheryl Burke got some hate thrown her way on the internet a few years back when she appeared to put on a few pounds. How cruel do you have to be to mock and bully someone for their weight? The Dancing With the Stars dancer dropped 15 pounds and then she was criticized again for looking too thin! Here's the thing: if you try to change your body for other people, you will never be able to please everyone but most importantly, you will never be happy. You should only ever lose weight or gain weight if it's what's right and healthy for you, not for anyone else. She decided to lose the weight because she was making unhealthy choices and she felt that she needed a change. She looks great no matter what her weight is but happiness and health is most important.
7 Christina Hendricks
Christina Hendricks is known mostly for her role as Joan on Mad Men and also for her sexy hourglass figure. Though she is not without talent, her figure, as sexy as it is today, is the perfect example of what was trendy in the period that Mad Men takes place. Every era has a trendy look--in the late 90s and early 2000s it was all about having a small booty and ultra thin build. Now it's all about big booties and small waists. The worst part about the body trends is that not everyone can fit into the mold and then just a few years later, a new body trend comes along and then you have to force yourself into that mold too. It's exhausting and you can't do that to yourself. Hendricks embraces her figure and should inspire you to do the same!
6 Uzo Aduba
Uzo Aduba is one of the most talented actresses on TV and she's got a few Emmys to prove it. Though she may not be a size zero, she can still rock her black and white bikini on the beach with her Orange is the New Black co-stars, Samira Wiley and Natasha Lyonne. The cast of Orange is the New Black is full of beautiful and talented actresses who are all different shapes and sizes. Even though they're all different, they are each beautiful in their own way. Aduba looks happy and healthy in her swimsuit and her legs looks muscular and toned. Some girls have super skinny legs and a thigh gap and some girls have strong, muscular thighs. There's nothing wrong with having an athletic build with muscles!
5 Jennifer Lawrence
Jennifer Lawrence is gorgeous and she doesn't need to be a size zero to be sexy. However, GQ thought it would be a good idea to Photoshop her anyway. The photo on the right is the Photoshopped version which makes her look so painfully skinny that you can see her ribs and her arms look like toothpicks. She looks much better in the photo on the left which is what she actually looks like. The Hunger Games star looks great just the way she is so why change her? This is a reminder to never let what you see in magazines get to your head. Even celebrities don't look like that and they look a lot better when they aren't airbrushed into oblivion. There is nothing sexier than being healthy and happy. Why try to meet a standard that no one can reach without Photoshop?
4 Kate Upton
Kate Upton first rose to prominence when she appeared in the 2012 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue in a skimpy bikini that drove men wild. Though Upton is beautiful and has a great bod, her bikini body doesn't always look the way it does in the magazines--how could it? Every single celeb on the cover of a magazine is Photoshopped. That's just the way it is. However, in real life, it's a little different. Take the photo above for example, it looks likes she's leaning over to grab something and she's got some rolls just like most of us have when we bend or lean over. Totally normal. Everybody has their good angles and their bad angles. Still, Upton looks healthy, gorgeous, and happy and, in the end, isn't that what we all aspire to be?
3 Nicki Minaj
When Bossip accused Nicki Minaj of only being popular because she had a big booty, she addressed the haters with a tweet of her own: "Not giving me my props doesn't stop me from being great. I am a mogul. Your hate is what made this possible. Lol. Thank uuuuuu! Mmuuaahhh!!!" Everybody's a critic. Some people may say that your booty is too big or too small but what matters is how you feel about your own body. Don't let the haters get you down. Though Nicki is one of the most talented rappers around, people still focus on her looks and condemn her for her physical attributes just like Christina Hendricks. When a male rapper is successful, no one says that he's only popular for his looks or his body. So why do they say that about females? Hmm?
In an Instagram post, Pink reminded her followers to stay away from the scales and to not count the pounds. She wrote: "Would you believe I'm 160 pounds and 5'3"? By 'regular standards' that makes me obese. I know I'm not at my goal or anywhere near it after Baby 2 but dammit I don't feel obese. The only thing I'm feeling is myself. Stay off that scale ladies!" Checking the scale every day will drive you crazy. Instead, you should take Pink's advice and just feel yourself. If you feel like you're not at where you want to be, then you can make a few changes to your diet. If your jeans are a little snug, then you can just lay off the sweets for a few days. The only thing that should affect your choices when it comes to your body is the way you feel about yourself, not numbers on a scale.
1 Lena Dunham
Lena Dunham has never shied away from bearing it all as Hannah on Girls and she has inspired girls to embrace their figures and come to terms with their bodies. In the name of body positivity, she also decided to get naked in an Instagram post with pear emojis covering her chest and a honey pot emoji over her nether regions. In her post she wrote, "I spent so many years loving my body but thinking it wasn't lovable by others- its sole purpose was to be fodder for jokes...but now, at age 31, having been through hell and back with my health and other people's perceptions of my physicality, I feel deeply comfortable with the idea that this pear-shaped pot of honey is equally good for making people laugh." Well said, Lena.