Body positivity is at the forefront of the collective conversation right now more than ever before. That’s a good thing. It’s a VERY good thing. We’re 100% percent in favor of diversity when it comes to the way bodies are portrayed in the media. No one standard should be held up as perfect or the only desirable way to be. It’s awesome to see plus-sized models being celebrated on the cover of the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue, on the catwalk at New York Fashion Week and in fashion advertising campaigns like Lane Bryant, Aerie, Forever 21, and Target.
But labeling certain body types as “Plus Size”can be tricky. What constitutes plus size, exactly? And who makes this decision? These are the questions social media is dealing with right now, exemplified by two opposing hashtags: #droptheplus and #keeptheplus.
While both movements have been around for a little while, they’re gaining momentum in the wake of Glamour’s decision to include Amy Schumer in their plus-size only issue. Schumer herself was unaware that she would be featured in the issue and voiced her concern that labeling her as plus size when she wears a size 6 or 8 is sending a bad message to young girls.
Glamour has since clarified that they never labeled Schumer as plus size, but only meant that she inspires women of all sizes with her message of body acceptance. Schumer joked about the incident a few days ago on Late Night With Jimmy Fallon and appears to have moved on, but the discussion is still going strong. Earlier this week, Plus Model published an article called #KeepThePlus: 30 Reasons Why We Should Keep Using the Term “Plus Size.”
Debating the use of the term “plus size” is nothing new for the magazine. They’ve covered it many times before, but the controversy surrounding the Glamour/Amy Schumer situation has brought new readers into their fold. Following the publication of the article (which stresses the point that until diverse body types are fairly and regularly represented in the fashion industry, the term “plus size” is necessary in order to guarantee inclusion), the hashtag #keeptheplus gained some serious momentum.
Here’s what people are saying on Twitter about the movement:
Some plus size models have also been tweeting their support for #keeptheplus:
How long the term “plus-size” continues to be used is anyone’s guess. But it looks like body acceptance, diversity, and the body positive movement are here to stay. And that’s something that supporters of both #droptheplus and #keeptheplus are definitely on board with. As are we.