Fashion, Life

Shout out to my legs

Shout out to my legs

Yes, that’s right, I’ve used a Little Mix song title (with a one word difference) as the name of this blog post. Entirely intentional I assure you, and feel free to sing it because I totally did.

So let’s talk about my legs. They are my biggest physical insecurity, and just writing the sentence before this one sent a little shudder down my spine because I don’t usually consider them an ideal topic of conversation; in fact I spend a lot of time and headspace hoping not to draw any attention to them at all.

Legs body positivityBody positivity and me

There are lots of things I think are ‘wrong’ with them; my thighs are large, the tops of them are wobbly no matter what I do, they have cellulite and stretch marks. My calves are wide and muscular – and don’t even get me started on my knees. My legs do not and will not look pretty or elegant in any length of dress or any style of trouser.

You may well have noticed, or maybe you haven’t. Many times and usually when getting ready to go out I’ve mentioned this in passing to my friends and every time it is met with a ‘what are you talking about’/’don’t be silly’/’they look nice’/some other such phrase that means the same thing. This is because my friends are very lovely people and that is what very lovely people say, because even though they know that they’re not ‘good legs’ by usual 2017 beauty standards, they’re not going to say it and also they’re fine and we should all be grateful for what we have (this is entirely true, by the way, but we’ll come on to that in a moment).

So I should say here – because I know that the people who read my blog are also very lovely people –  that it doesn’t really seem to matter what anyone else thinks or doesn’t think about them. Just like a lot of body insecurities, this is about what I think of them, and the change in the way I see them has to come from me alone.

How to show off your legsRed skirt outfit photo

Because this blog post isn’t just about legs, really; that’s my example, but if you have an area of your body that you feel especially self-conscious of then I’m sure you will be familiar with what I’m talking about. We all know that summer can be a difficult time to think body positive, since everything in the shops seems to be designed specifically for a certain body type – although as everyone I talk to seems to find it hard to buy summer clothes that make them feel great, I have no idea what that body type is. Some kind of alien maybe? Either way, this time of year is when we all seem to be most aware of what we consider to be ‘problem areas’ (plus of course the very physical reminder that rears it’s painful and rather ugly head during summer: the dreaded chub rub).

Of course we should be grateful for what our bodies do for us – they are amazing, amazing things, and it’s something I’d like to hope we all realise. But as much as we might wholeheartedly believe that, and as much as we might agree that we all need to embrace our bodies and their beautiful differences, it’s not always that simple in practice. It can take real effort to apply it to ourselves, and that’s fine, because we are human.

Self concious of legsBody positivity

It’s not easy love your body at all times – in fact sometimes it’s bloody hard and occasionally feels impossible – so often we have to make the conscious decision to try to. And that’s why I wanted to give my legs, the part of myself that I have never been kind to, a shout out today. They push through gym workouts, runs and Insanity classes. Last year they carried me up a 4000m mountain in Borneo and through a 10km race in my home city. Yesterday they squatted weights that I could never have lifted 3 years ago. They carry me from A to B to C and to WXYZ on a daily basis – but aside from all that stuff, they’re what I’ve got and I owe it to myself to try to embrace them.

And in the spirit of trying more than ever to love and celebrate what I have; a red mini skirt. If there’s one item that screams ‘LOOK AT ME’, this might well be it (or my version of it anyway). So here I am, drawing attention to the part of my body that I’m never, ever kind to in my super bright skirt, and feeling relaxed and happy in it – contrary to what my facial expression may suggest because sorry I haven’t quite mastered that in photos yet. I even wore the skirt with converse rather than nude heels or shoes with a V at the front to elongate my little stumps like all that bullshit that’s frequently pedalled tries to tell me, because trying to make them look as slim as possible wouldn’t really have demonstrated the point all that well.

Red skirt and teeLearning to love my legsTee – Topshop | Skirt – New Look | Trainers – Converse | Sunnies – Primark

So I know it’s difficult, but try to cut your body and the parts of it that you struggle with a bit of slack. It might be horribly cliché to talk about being grateful, and it might not be enough to make you truly love your body, but it’s a decent enough place to start what is sometimes a very difficult process. That is what I hope I have done for my legs today. They are strong, they are imperfect, and most importantly they are mine – here’s to being kinder to them.

Learning to love the skin you're inLearning to love my bodyStart to love yourself

Photos: Rob Poor

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17 thoughts on “Shout out to my legs”

  1. This is such a gorgeous outfit and I think the t-shirt is so cute! Everyone has their own insecurities but I think that we we just need to learn to embrace them and embrace the fact that nobody’s perfect and we need to love ourselves for who we are!
    Zoe xx

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  2. Mine is my tummy! It doesn’t match the rest of my body but that’s because I lost 9 stone so it’s never going to. I do a pretty good job of hiding it (people never believe I have it!) and the moments when I truly hate it I remind myself that it tells a pretty amazing story. Losing all that weight is the proudest moment of my life and I think it’ll quite possibly always be my greatest achievement and my big wobbly flabby belly is a reminder of the journey that I did!

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  3. I love this outfit! I’m trying really hard to work on body confidence this summer. Last month I had a massive clear out of my wardrobe of anything I didn’t feel comfortable wearing or that was too big or too small. I bought some crop tops and I actually love wearing them with shorts and they make me feel more confident about my stomach, weirdly. I’m even shopping for a bikini, something I never thought I would do. These outfit photos are great, body confidence is a hard slog but I think wearing clothes that you love and pushing yourself out of your comfort zone a little can only be a good thing.

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  4. You have literally just described exactly how I feel about my legs! I think I’ve learnt to accept myself a lot more in the past year though mainly because I’ve spent more time pushing myself out of my comfort zone and not always covering them up! Red really suits you and I love the skirt with the trainers. Also I know you won’t believe me, but your legs look great!
    Amy xx
    http://www.callmeamy.co.uk

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  5. It’s so difficult to accept every part of our body, mannnn… insecurities can come from all kinds of places/experiences, but that’s the way to go, girl, consciously making an effort to show them, to feel confident in whatever you wanna wear, and to remind that every part of our not-so-perfect body makes us “us” 🙂
    Happy week, Sophie

    Saida | She talks Glam

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  6. I totally get where you’re coming from. My legs have always been my biggest insecurity too and even when they have toned up I still find something about them I don’t like. I’m trying to be kinder to myself (and my legs). Good luck on your journey and I love the outfit!
    Ella xx

    http://www.ellaryder.com

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  7. Sophie, I loved this post and the message behind it. Really digging that skirt btw, and how you paired the whole outfit looks great!!

    -Ams

    Toyoufroma.com

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  8. OMG SOPH totally love you for this and I’m in the EXACT same boat as you. No matter what I do I bloody hate my legs – especially my knees. I think it’s probably something to do with us being on the shorter side?! who knows. I’ve really been covering them up lately because of the heat, I’ve been loving midi skirts to hide those bloody knees. But this has really inspired me to just whack them out. PS ur lush xxx
    Jen, Velvet Spring x

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  9. Love be the outfit! Love your legs! Love the post. I went to a self confidence course once (don’t ask) but we had to pick our three least favourite things about ourselves and our common negative thoughts and then reframe them as positive. I too hate my legs so I chose to change mine from eeew I hate my legs to “Inlove my legs because they are strong and powerful and get me where I need to go!” And do you know what it’s true!! Maybe you need something like that to switch those negative thoughts to. And honestly, I’d kill for your beautiful legs 😘

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