This Powerful, Body-Positive Hashtag Is Going Viral for All the Right Reasons


On Saturday, body-positive activist Simone Mariposa started the hashtag #WeWearWhatWeWant to reinforce that the right to show skin isn't exclusive for conventionally thin girls.

Mariposa heard a story of how a plus-size woman was openly "sneered" at for wearing a dress. "Every plus-size girl has had to bear the terrible brunt of being judged/policed for what we wear & how we wear it," Mariposa, who has over 10,000 followers, explained on Twitter. "I no longer allow people to dictate what I should and shouldn't wear. It's okay for a plus-size woman to let her body breathe in her clothing." 

She elaborated in an interview with Mic: "A lot of people don't know what a day in the life of a plus-size woman is like. We are treated very poorly, sometimes as less than people. So, by using the effectiveness of social media, our voices are heard louder than ever." 

From there #WeWearWhatWeWant was born, with hundreds sharing photos of themselves in socially "unacceptable" outfits.

While others are simply voicing their support of the movement.

Mariposa, who often posts photos of herself in crop tops, bikinis and everything in between, once followed these so-called "rules" that tried to tell her what she could and could not wear. 

"I've always been very spunky, outgoing and confident in terms of my intelligence," she said. "But my body was a different story. I was constantly comparing myself to others, and it was very detrimental to my mental health. [But] I couldn't let my self-destructive mindset hinder me from being successful, so I slowly changed how I thought of myself."

"There is nothing more flattering for a woman to wear than her confidence."

Because the internet is filled with trolls, body-positive hashtags, like the recent #EverySizeIsBeautiful and #ShareYourSize, sometimes get co-opted by those making a joke out of a very serious topic. So, it's refreshing to see a campaign that is being used just as Mariposa had wanted it to, especially one that encourages people to share photos of themselves, more specifically their bodies, which is not always the easiest task to do. 

"To know that women are gaining confidence through this hashtag makes me ecstatic beyond words," Mariposa said. "There is nothing more flattering for a woman to wear than her confidence, and it's her prerogative, and hers only, to dress her body however she chooses."

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