Style & Beauty

Candice Huffine Explains Why 'You Look So Skinny' Isn't A Compliment

"How come people don't ever say 'You look so fit,' 'Wow, you are so strong' or 'You run so fast and far now!'?!"

Candice Huffine has some thoughts about the words we use to deliver praise ― and they just might change your thoughts, too.

The plus-size model and body positive advocate shared a gym selfie last week, wearing a pulled-up T-shirt to expose her stomach. Quoting from a journal entry she wrote a year ago, Huffine wondered why we value being called “skinny” instead of being admired for strength, fitness and ability.

“In my experience the times I’ve slimmed down the most have been preceded by stress, a break up, lack of self-care, something traumatic. How come people don’t ever say ‘You look so fit, ‘Wow, you are so strong’ or ‘You run so fast and far now?!’” she wrote.

“It’s always about size, not ability,” she wrote, adding, “sometimes it overjoys us for someone to say we shrunk. Well, I’ve changed by mindset once and for all. My stomach can jiggle and roll up when I sit for all of eternity, but if I can be healthy and strong and finish this race, then I’m complete.”

The memory was pretty timely for Huffine, who ran a half-marathon just a few days after posting the photo. She says that she is now the best shape of her life.

“Tummy still has rolls and I feel unstoppable,” she wrote.

Her post hits home, making a valid point about the pressure we put ourselves under to look a certain way. It’s an inspiring reminder that we are perfect just the way we are, no matter our size.

“There’s no perfect body,” she wrote. “The one you have right now is amazing. Let it lead you to perfect days, finish lines, happy times and fun. Take in compliments that inspire you and give ones that empower.”

We know one thing is for sure: We’re going to think twice about the way we both deliver and receive compliments from now on.