According to the CDC, the average American woman over 20 years old weighs 165 pounds, which translates to a size 12 or 14 — a far cry from the size 2 or 4 many women desire.
PHOTOS: Celebs Kick Off Summer By Busting Out Teeny Bikinis
So where does our distorted image of “normal” come from? Why, Hollywood, of course!
The bodies of Angelina Jolie, Lindsay Lohan and Cameron Diaz are plastered all over the media. While we can’t help being fascinated by these skinny celebs, they clearly set unrealistic standards for the rest of us. To mix things up, here’s a collection of celebrity bodies in all shapes and sizes — and these stars are more than happy with the skin they’re in.
It wasn’t a dress, makeup or a perfect body that captivated the world at the Grammys this year; it was the young British music sensation, Adele. She showed viewers that true talent trumps a tiny figure.
“My life is full of drama and I don’t have time to worry about something as petty as what I look like,” she told Rolling Stone magazine in 2011. “I love seeing Lady Gaga’s boobs and bum. I love seeing Katy Perry’s boobs and bum. Love it. But that’s not what my music is about. I don’t make music for eyes, I make music for ears.” While we, too, love seeing Lady Gaga and Katy Perry’s curves, there’s nothing we envy more than Adele’s voice.
This year, Octavia Spencer took home the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress, but it’s not just her incredible performance in “The Help” that deserves a standing ovation. Spencer sets an example for women around the world, showing us that talent and beauty can come in all shapes and sizes. In her acceptance speech for the Oscar, Spencer said, “I hope that in some way I can be some sort of beacon of hope, particularly because I’m not the typical Hollywood beauty.”
As a young pop sensation, Aguilera wasn’t afraid to show off her petite figure by dancing “Dirty.” Recently, Aguilera has shown off a heavier figure and courageously defends her new curves.
"As long as I'm happy in my own skin, that's all I need,” she exclaimed at a press conference for “The Voice” this January. “I'm happy with where I'm at. I have a boyfriend that loves my body. I love my body. My son is healthy and happy. That's all that matters.”
While Kate Upton’s body is still fit for the cover of the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition, the model made our list because she (along with curvy pioneers such as Tyra Banks) is helping to redefine beauty. So much of the fashion world believes that models should be less skin and more bones, but Upton rocks a voluptuous figure that, we think, makes her all the more sexy.
In addition, Upton proves that supermodels are humans too — they crave food! “I never deprive myself,” said Upton at an event at New York City's Club Crimson this year. “If I’m craving something once a week, then I’ll go have it.” Well Kate, we hope you continue to indulge in, say, cheeseburgers (see Upton in the latest Carl’s Jr. ad campaign), because never have they looked so good.
It’s not every day that we see curves like Christina Hendricks', and they have been known to drive men mad. While some snipe at her size, Hendricks draws strength from her mother. “She was very celebratory of her body. I never heard her once say, ‘I feel fat,’” she told Health magazine in 2010.
Kelly Clarkson has struggled to fit the petite-sized mold of a Hollywood pop star for a long time. For years, Clarkson’s weight has noticeably fluctuated, but she seems to have found a healthy balance recently. In her 2012 Grammy performance with Jason Aldean, Clarkson radiated a new-found confidence; she looked comfortably gorgeous in her own skin.
“Everyone’s like, you’re a pop star, you should be smaller. But I’m the pop star. I’ll make the rules. I’m rockin’ this body right now. I love it,” the Idol told People magazine in January 2012. This strong, independent attitude gives us yet another reason to call Clarkson an “American Idol.”
Winslet has long been outspoken about body image among women and her resistance to conform to Hollywood’s skin-and-bones standards. In 2008, she spoke to "The Sydney Morning Herald" about the idea of “the perfect body” among women: "Nobody is perfect. I just don't believe in perfection. But I do believe in saying, 'This is who I am and look at me not being perfect!' I'm proud of that."
And for her latest message to women everywhere, Winslet has become the face of the spring 2012 line for St. John. In the video campaign, Winslet talks about the laid-back aspects of the St. John line amidst sun-laden shots of her posing in the clothing. Her favorite part? “You don’t have to be a size 2 or even a size 4,” she says. “I love that; that’s me all over.”