On TikTok, it seems like you can’t browse for five minutes without coming across a video of a guy with six-pack abs or a skinny girl doing a dance. Every couple of weeks, there is a new trend that involves showing off your body. For young people, seeing this type of content can warp self-perception and can trigger people with anxiety or depression. These videos can also be very harmful to someone with an eating disorder, or someone who used to have one. In the past, we have seen a lot of toxic content on TikTok that can lead to negative body image, and those types of videos still pop up every day. However, in the past couple of months, there has been an uptick in body-positive trends and videos.
One trend that has gone viral is a chain of several female influencers dancing while pulling down their high-waisted pants to show their natural bellies. The chain was praised by viewers and received millions of likes. On TikTok, it is important to make sure that what you watch is not going to make you feel terrible about your appearance or weight. In a world that obsesses with traditional beauty standards, here are five body-positive TikTokers that will make you feel like the beautiful badass you are.
Brooklyn is a 16-year-old body-positive TikToker who has blown up on the app in the past few months. Her message is that everyone should be able to wear a crop top, even people who do not have a flat stomach. With over 5.6 million followers on the app, Brooklynne is known for her princess POVs and stunning make-up tutorials. However, after getting some hate comments about her weight, Brooklynne started a new body-positive trend on her page. Recently, her most popular videos have been hate comment responses, where a comment like “Girl crop tops were not made for you” is displayed on the screen, along with Brooklynne happily dancing while wearing a crop top.
Reply to @so_savannah_grace1 this is the last time I will make this exact video, I wanted to explain more throughly why I made this so many times…
These types of videos are great for young people to see because it shows that when you love yourself and have confidence in your body, it is harder for people to tear you down. With Brooklyn’s confident demeanor and “kill them with kindness” attitude, she’s definitely worth a follow.
With 297,000 followers on Instagram and almost 59,000 followers on TikTok, Ambar Driscoll is known for being a model — but she is also a body-positive influencer. We have seen how dangerous the modeling industry can be for self-image, and many of us have compared ourselves to models at one time or another. However, Ambar shows us that even models deal with bloating, stomach rolls and negative body image. In many of her Instagram posts, Ambar shows candid pictures of herself and expresses thankfulness and love for herself and her body.
Her TikToks are equally inspiring. In one video with over 18,000 likes, Ambar offers advice to young people who are feeling bad about their bodies because of toxic TikTok culture. She describes that the only time she had a flat stomach was when she was dealing with eating disorders, writing, “Your mental health is more important than what you look like,” among other words of positivity. Ambar Driscoll is a positive role model for women and girls because she shows us that what we see in the magazines and on social media isn’t always reality.
3. Flo Simpson
In an app full of negativity and toxic habits, Flo Simpson is the breath of fresh air we all need. Flo’s TikTok journey began as a way to distract herself from the stresses of quarantine, to document her healthy lifestyle and weight loss journey. Now, with over 650,000 followers on the app, this casual pastime grew into something much bigger.
In the media, weight loss is often seen as the final goal, something to work toward so that you can finally love your body. However, Flo believes that the journey is just as important as the destination and that you can lose weight while also loving the body you’re in.
Her cheery, lighthearted videos range from healthy snack ideas to body confidence tips. Flo said about her TikTok presence: “I want to show people you can lose weight in a healthy way. Like with every platform, there are videos of people showing that they eat just carrots and hummus. It’s not only unrealistic, it’s unhealthy and damaging.”
Denise Mercedes and Maria Castellanos are the perfect pair. The two friends are co-founders of the #stylenotsize movement. While Denise is a plus-size woman and Maria is not, they have built their brand on showing other women that no matter what size you are, you can rock any outfit. Their signature #stylenotsize TikToks show them wearing the same outfits, changing their clothes a few times in each video to show different looks.
The series proves that women of any body type can look stylish, confident and beautiful. The point of these videos is to show that clothes shouldn’t be “off-limits” to anyone, even though the beauty industry can sometimes perpetuate the idea that people of certain sizes shouldn’t wear certain clothes.
Denise said about the trend, in an article for Naira: “We’re so used to seeing one body type being praised and that leaves a lot of other people out. The series makes other people feel included and they tell us their confidence level went up so much.”
From jeans to swimwear, Denise and Maria will make you feel like you can wear anything, and more importantly, feel confident in your skin.
Tarah Elizabeth has had a tough past, but that doesn’t stop her from uplifting her over 223,000 followers on TikTok. Now, she inspires others and helps women feel comfortable and confident. Tarah uses her platform to discuss body image issues like bloating, eating disorders and social media, as well as mental health and trauma issues like depression, addiction and sexual assault.
Tarah unapologetically shares her stories on video to help other women feel a sense of comfort with their own mental illnesses, body image issues and even trauma. By being vulnerable with her audience, her page can be a safe space for women who deal with similar issues. With a wide range of video topics like workouts, self-love and confidence-boosting affirmations, Tarah is a bright light in the gloomy world of social media.