At the start of the summer, a crazy – yet incredible – thing happened to me.
As regular readers might remember, I headed off on a wonderful family holiday to Ochos Rios in Jamaica on a family press trip to Beaches resort and it was there that my husband Peter took a quick pre-beach snap of me wearing my favourite red Boux Avenue bikini.
Having not worn a bikini in public for a while, this was the first time, two kids later, that I felt truly confident to don a two-piece so wanted to mark the occasion with a snap.
Encouraged by my husband Peter, I uploaded the photo to social media.
This was in the wake of the controversy surrounding Protein World’s ‘beach body ready’ adverts and I wanted to show that all women should be proud of our bodies – no matter the size or shape or however many stretch marks we might have!
I’ve had 2 c-sections, carrying big, tall baby boys both times and it’s safe to say my body is definitely not what is was.
I’ve lost definition around my waist and I have stretch marks, but you know what, it doesn’t bother me at all. Honestly.
And nor does it bother my husband Peter either. He always makes me feel good about myself, even when I’ve been at my heaviest.
There are so many unrealistic body expectations put upon women.
I’ve recently returned from London Fashion Week, and there, I sadly witnessed with my own eyes, the ultra-thin models on the catwalk. It’s a sorry sight.
But we’re also seeing progress too with ‘plus-sized models’ (I use this term reluctantly as I genuinely don’t think a size 16 should really be labelled plus size) Ashley Graham owning the catwalk and causing a social media storm – for all the right reasons. Yay!
But back to the bikini shot….
Having posted the image on my Twitter, Instagram and Facebook accounts, I didn’t think any more of it until suddenly I took my phone out of my handbag a few hours later and was met with hundreds of notifications.
The photo quickly reached 60k people in a few hours, and I was overwhelmed by the plethora of positive comments from women telling me it has inspired them to overcome their fears and wear a bikini in public for the first time or take their children swimming again.
I spent that night in tears (of joy) reading all the wonderful messages of support – the unexpected reaction literally blew me away.
You can read all about it here.
The very next day, I felt inspired to start the #proudinmybikini hashtag as a way for women to feature our bodies collectively, a way for us to support and admire one another’s strength and confidence.
Now we’re heading towards the end of the summer (sob) I wanted to create this post and celebrate all the women – and their hot bikini bods – who got involved in the hashtag!
And when I say ‘hot bikini bods’ I mean ‘so hot it hurts, sizzling bods’
Just check out these sexy mama’s *wolf whistles*-
(Insta/twitter handles depending on where the image was shared)
If you wanted to share your image but didn’t get to in time or have blogged about body image and want to link up, whether you feature here or not, please join my Proud in My Bikini linky that will be open forever!
I also want to say a massive thank you to everyone who posted their bikini picture this summer along with the hashtag-
Huge thanks to:
- Mama’s Haven,
- French Yummy Mummy,
- Mama and More,
- A Little Bit Country Blog,
- Coco Mama Style
- Capture By Lucy
- Northern New Mum
- Mama Mummy Mum
- Along Came Jay
- Morgan’s Milieu
- Little Hearts Big Love
- What Lizzy Loves
- Mumaleary’s Blog
- Lamb & Bear
- Finding Our Feet
- Mummy Tries
- All Baby Advice/ Fitness 4 Mamas
- Super Lucky Di
- Truly Madly Kids
- Helpful Mum
- Life with Munchers
- A Mother Thing
- Kremb de la Kremb
- Chronicles of Dollie Day Dream
- London Mummy of Two Girls
- Adventures of a Monkeyfooted Mum
- Franglaise Mummy
- Little Luca and Me
- Holly Bobs
- Pouting With Heels/ To Dream of Dresses
- Mother Distracted
- Modern Military Mother
- The Joy Chaser/ The Essex Barn
- Mums’ Days
- Naughty Forty Diaries
- Sophie Mei Lan
- Mums Days
(Apologies if anyone was missed here, please notify me if so).
…In a world where negativity can unfortunately so often dominate online rhetoric, it has been heart warming to see women coming together to support and admire one another.
It was great to read all the comments on everyone’s individual photos and posts, and it’s so uplifting knowing that together we are all playing our part in shifting the unrealistic expectations placed on women’s beauty.
I hope we’re at a tipping point where every single woman, mother or not, bikini/swimwear or not, can start feeling proud of their bodies.
Whether you’re a size 8 or a size 18, we should all be proud, we shouldn’t glamorise one type of body shape because we’re all fabulous daaaaahlings!
Let’s celebrate our strength and beauty.
Thank you to all who took part and let’s keep the positivity going!