Behind the ‘Gram with @GemmasLittleWorld
This week we delve deep into the topic of ‘body positivity’ with none other than the beauty and brains behind the plus-size account, @gemmaslittleworld.
This week we delve deep into the topic of ‘body positivity’ with none other than the beauty and brains behind the plus-size account, @gemmaslittleworld, who has generated over 10,000 followers with her positive personality, cut-the-bullshit attitude, and fabulous fashion sense.
Read on to see what she had to say about the power of using social media for the greater good, society’s standard put on plus-sized women, and what the high street shops could be doing better to be authentically exclusive…
1. Tell us your story... What's your background, and why did you start creating content aimed at plus-sized people?
I started blogging around 6 years ago and initially only reviewed beauty and skincare products. My friends would always ask me for advice on these products, or where to find the best deals and so I thought why not set up a page somewhere.
However, from there I started to gain a passion for social media and soon realised that there were positive communities online, such as the plus size community, which made me feel good about myself. This community really did change my life and made me realise that there is room for everyone, online.
Then as I started posting more about being plus size, I started receiving messages from strangers who told me I had inspired them to feel more confident, which was a total surprise, but only made me want to post more, and create a positive online presence for people like me.
2. I love that stumbling across the plus size community online ended up becoming a bit of a positive chain reaction, where you then made other people feel more confident too. A true inspiration. With this in mind, do you try to get a specific message across within your content creation?
My aim is to show that plus size girls CAN be the face of brand campaigns and that we are good enough. YOU are good enough no matter what your size. I just want people to feel comfortable in their skin. I have seen so many people and even been guilty of this myself, not living their life because they are afraid of what others feel about them. We only get one life and I really believe that we have to live it to the full.
3. I couldn’t agree more. As you mentioned brands, what are your favourite clothing brands?
Unfortunately, us plus size people can’t have the same shopping experience that a straight sized person can have on the high-street, so most of my favourite brands are online.
I often find that our clothing options on the high street are limited to a two rail section full of drab clothes, with no colour or personality. I’m talking bin bags and prints in the same pattern of your nana’s curtains! It’s hardly inspiring. I just think in this day and age a lot of brands have an opportunity to stand out and prove themselves to be exclusive, but they are still lagging behind. In fact, I think the high street has just given into the online battle, and don’t feel the need to compete.
However, one of my favourite online brands is Yours Clothing, although that being said – I only buy online as I find their stores to be overstocked and uninspirational, which makes for a stressful shopping trip.
Other favourites including the concession Asos Curve, M&S, Monsoon and PLT. All of these shops offer on-trend clothing and a variation online. I find that with brands like these, you are able to showcase your personality through your clothing, you are able to have a “style” even thought you are plus size whether that’s bright clothing, florals or the boho look. The choice is yours.
4. What does body positivity mean to you?
For me, it means ending the stigma of body shaming. It’s being able to challenge how society judges our bodies. I believe that all bodies deserve to be loved and are good enough, and that we need to instill this message into everyone, especially the younger generation.
Society shouldn’t judge people for being too fat, too slim, black, white, transgender or anything. We are all so much more than our appearance and deserve to feel comfortable in our own skin.
5. Have you always been so confident?
I’m very good at putting a brave face on. No one can always be confident 100% of the time. I have my down days just as much as the next person. I’m an overthinker, but when I start on that path I open up and start a conversation about it. It’s important to do that – to create a support bubble and talk.
That’s why social media can be so powerful. When I started posting pictures of myself and talking plus size fashion etc, I was scared and not confident at all. But each and every picture I posted and post now helps build that confidence. I always tell people it’s a journey we have to work on our whole lives.
6. What would thirteen-year-old Gemma say about who you are today?
This question actually makes me feel really sad. When I was 13 years old, I would constantly want to look and act like other girls. I had zero confidence and really didn’t know who I was. I allowed others to upset me, tell me what I should be wearing, doing, saying, far too much. That 13-year-old would tell me be quiet, blend in, if you speak up you will be bullied for being the odd one out. I don’t think she had any idea how strong she was.
7. I’m really sorry to hear that. What would current age Gemma say instead?
If there is something you want to do in life, no matter your size, do it! Life is too short!