Women are taught a lot of things about how their bodies “should” look. The world is full of critics—and a woman’s harshest critic is usually herself. When celebrities are slammed in the tabloids for showing cellulite on the beach and models are demonized for being too thin, it’s no wonder we look in the mirror and aren’t 100 percent happy with what we see. In fact, 96 percent of YouBeauty readers feel less than thrilled about their bodies. We hear you.That is why we’re bringing you The Confidence Project, a whole month of content devoted to loving your body and feeling confident in your own skin. We’re officially challenging you to shake off the negativity and step into a positive light. Get ready to shine.What Is Body Confidence, Anyway?Body confidence is about so much more than showing off a killer six-pack (though, that’s pretty badass). Feeling good about your looks requires looking beyond them, to the complementary aspects of your life that color the way you see yourself. We asked YouBeauty experts from a variety of fields to weigh in on what body confidence means to them:
Tracy Hafen, YouBeauty Fitness Expert: “Body confidence, to me, is the social, physical and psychological/spiritual sense of assurance that comes from your physical characteristics. It’s not just about how your body looks but also how it performs.”
Heather Quinlan, YouBeauty Self-Image Expert: “How you feel about your body starts in your mind. If you think that everyone else in the room is thinner than you, you’re going to feel terrible and your body confidence will be low. If you think that you look pretty good, you’ll feel better and your body confidence will be higher.”
Kristin Kirkpatrick, R.D., YouBeauty Nutrition Expert: “Having a healthy body and having the confidence that you do are two very different things. The foods that can give you a great body—such as omega-3 fatty acids, black tea and dark chocolate—can also boost your mood. These are all foods that, in moderation, can help you live longer, happier and with oodles of confidence.”
Jacqui Stafford, YouBeauty Style Expert: “You should never, ever try to be or dress like anybody that you’re not. Figure out your body shape and dress for it. Forget about trends; what’s more important is finding what works for you. Confidence is always in style.”QUIZ: What’s Your Body Shape? Find Out Here.Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to accept your body. The Confidence Project’s articles, galleries and expert advice will help you look at yourself from every angle—and learn to love what you see. Join us here!