It’s bikini body season! Where sudden panic-induced crash dieting starts, petty nitpicking over ‘problem areas’ is heightened, and self-esteem is generally lowered as people attempt to clone themselves into a socially constructed, airbrushed ‘ideal’. I’m going to let you in on a top-secret: you already have a bikini body. You have a body which will fit a bikini on it – voila!
You don’t have Kendall Jenner’s bikini body because you’re not Kendall Jenner. Just like you don’t have Bella Hadid’s bikini body because you’re not Bella Hadid. You’re you, so be you.
For this year’s bikini body season, let’s have a look at some better things to be doing instead of chasing a perfect falsity, which will ultimately lead to your very BEST bikini body – One you actually love and is your very own.
Work On Loving Yourself For Being… Well, Yourself.
This is far healthier than a month of intense work-out sessions and glorious healthy eating. This is basic mental health. Everybody deserves to be celebrated, embraced and appreciated – which, by the way, includes yours.
Cut out any petty nitpicking over the way your body looks. Maybe your stomach isn’t as flat as a pancake, or you have stretch marks on your thighs, or your breasts aren’t as big and plump as you’d like them to be – the list could go on forever. Seriously, why should these things truly matter?
Stop Comparing Yourself to Other People
So there’s this swimwear model that keeps popping up on your Instagram. Her breasts are completely in proportion with her hips, there’s not a single mark on her skin and her bum is the right mix of perkiness and roundness. What’s her secret? Technical lighting, photoshop, and an expensive personal trainer.
Throughout our lives, society has forced this body ideal down our necks. From clothing and swimwear adverts only using this body type to countless news articles glorifying the bodies of celebrities that fit the same type and mocking others that don’t. And the result? Low self-esteem and an unhealthy desire to match this socially constructed ‘ideal’.
The real truth is that there is no such thing as perfection or a true ideal: there are merely people and perspectives. Train your own perspective to idealise you, not the unrealistic body type other perspectives have idealised.
Make the Term ‘Problem Areas’ a Thing Of the Past.
There’s no such thing as a ‘problem area’ on you. The only problem here is the fact that people deem certain body qualities and sizes a ‘problem’ in the first place.
Find a Bikini That Makes You Feel Like Your Best Self
Instead of wasting months of physical and emotional energy trying to carve a body to suit a certain bikini, find a bikini that suits your body. If you feel nervous or self-conscious in a bikini, it’s not you that needs to change, it’s the bikini. There are plenty of different styles to embrace and flatter different body types; it’s about finding the right one for you.
This doesn’t necessarily mean that there is a ‘certain’ bikini for your shape, or that you’re confined to a certain style. It’s about how you feel in it and what makes you confident.
Look After Yourself For the Right Reasons.
Exercise because it keeps your mind and body healthy. Because it releases endorphins and builds physical endurance so that you’re not running out of breath after running for 10 seconds. Not because you want a flatter stomach. Drink water because it keeps your brain and body functioning at its best capacity. Not because it supposedly speeds up metabolism or flushes out toxins.
Eat a well-balanced and healthy diet because it provides your system with the best range of nutrients and vitamins. Even indulge in the odd fatty meal or bar of chocolate because you’re a human being and it makes you happy. Don’t deprive yourself of certain indulgences for fear of extra calories. Certainly, don’t deprive your body of the adequate amount of food and energy it needs because you want a lower scale number.