February 23, 2016

The Plus Sized Girls Guide to Living a Happier Life

Being a plus sized girl has been my reality for over 10 years now. I've been on the bigger side for most of my life, and honestly, it sometimes can be challenging. Society feels that it has the right to critique you on a daily basis, strangers feel that they have the right to point out your flaws, you are made to feel less than, and it can be a real pain to try to find fashionable clothing that doesn't make you look 60. 

However, this isn't a pity party type of post. I've been making changes in my life over the past 5 years to become a happier and mentally healthier person. Surrounding myself with positivity and positive role models that look like me. I shouldn't have to apologize for being happy and comfortable with myself. I'm becoming happier every day, and I'm proud of the woman that I am evolving into. 

I want to spread this positivity around, and share some of my favorite blogs, clothing stores, kick ass women, and quotes that keep me going and keep my inner Beyonce feeling like the goddess she is.

Fair warning, this post is going to be link and text heavy. I have a lot to say...#sorrynotsorry

As a blogger, I could not not include blogs. Did that even make sense? Blogs are a huge part of my daily life, and were one of the first places I looked when I started my body positivity journey.

Militant Baker
Jes Baker is a girl after my own heart. She owns her weirdness, champions her quirks, and sticks a big ol' middle finger up at anyone that body shames. Her book, Things No One Will Tell Fat Girls, was the breath of fresh air that I needed in my life. I cannot tell you how refreshing it is to hear someone be unapologetically themselves.

Nicolette Mason is painfully fashionable and put together. Her blog and social media leave me envious each and every time. Nicolette writes for Marie Claire magazine, and lives a life that most wouldn't even be able to dream of. She always seems to be covering some fashion show or meeting some cool celebrity. She is a great source for fashion inspiration, and figuring out how to elevate your closet.

Gabi Fresh was the first plus fashion blog that I ever read. Back when it was called Young, Fat, and Fabulous. Gabi puts together outfits that are so cool and always on trend. Her blog was where I was introduced to Torrid and ASOS Curve. Thank God for that!

This is a more recent blog discovery. I stumbled across Brittany's Instagram, and was thrilled to see that she had a blog as well. She does a lot of body positive posts, and tackles plus related issues with her own interesting spin. I also love that she includes fun family posts and day-to-day glimpses into her life. I always find that this lets you really get to know the blogger behind the blog.

Shopping for clothing is one of the biggest challenges I have faced as a plus sized woman. Most clothing stores have plus size sections that either have very few options to choose from or the most hideous patterns and random use of sequins that will definitely cause nightmares. I've compiled a list of different places that I love to shop at.

Oh Torrid, how I love you. Torrid has been my ride-or-die store since I was in high school. They were the first plus clothing store that I found that actually had fashionable pieces that I wanted to wear. My little teenage heart was so overwhelmed the first time I went on the site that I cried. No joke!

Torrid recently started working with my imaginary BFF, Rebel Wilson, and I am living for her collections. I bought myself and my sister pieces of her first collection for Christmas, and it is so fun. It is awesome to see a company making clothes with bright colors, bold prints, and fun graphics. Torrid also has an incredible intimates section.

ASOS Curve is the cool girl at work that you wish you could be. They do simplistic, modern, and minimalist fashion like no other. Their pieces can be a bit pricey, but I think it is completely worth when you consider the quality. Their jackets, tops, and dresses are well made, transition easily between seasons, and have a timeless quality about them. I bought a dress from ASOS Curve for my college graduation, and I have never felt more beautiful in my entire life. 

I have a love-hate relationship with Ava & Viv, but I thought that it would only be fair that I include them. First, I will admit that I have more love than hate. I was thrilled when Target announced that they were launching a plus line. It was about time! The line has been my go-to for affordable dress pants for work, t-shirts, jackets, and casual tops. I would like to see Ava & Viv use better fabrics for their dresses and more formal tops. No one wants to wear an itchy top that will be bugging them all day. The patterns that they use could also use some fine tuning, but overall they are a great option for budget conscious babes.

Evans/Scarlett & Jo
Evans has been my go-to place over the past couple of years for closet staples. I love their ultra soft and comfortable cardigans and feminine blouses. Recently, they teamed up with Scarlett & Jo for what might be the prettiest dress line I have ever seen. I follow Scarlett & Jo on Instagram, and I cannot get over how stunning their clothing is. I love how they use models of all shapes, sizes, and colors. It really allows you to see how the dress might look on your body.

Swimsuits For All
Shopping for a swimsuit can be downright traumatic for a plus sized woman. I know that my heart starts beating faster whenever I need to find a new one. Swimsuits For All is a one-stop shop, where you can find a swimsuit, cover up, and other beach essentials with sizes going up to 34. There is no longer that dreaded feeling of finding the perfect swimsuit, but then realizing it doesn't come in your size. I already have my eye on a few bikinis for this summer that I might take the plunge and buy.

Forever 21+
Forever 21 is every college girls best friend. Their pieces are affordable and follow current trends. This is my go-to place for trendy items that I am unwilling to drop an entire paycheck on. I have purchased so many kimonos, fair isle sweaters, and funky cat shirts. Forever 21 will always have a place in my heart. 

I am quite proud of my Instagram feed. I have filled it with strong and kick butt women that champion body positivity and confidence. There is no better way to start your day than scrolling through a feed of women that inspire you. A lot of the people I follow are beauty/fashion related, so be prepared for stunning makeup and clothing envy.

Eff Your Beauty Standards/ Tess Holiday
Tess Holiday has taken the fashion industry by storm. She proves that plus women can be sexy, fashionable, and confident. She was the first woman of her size to be signed by a major modeling agency. Tess also founded Eff Your Beauty Standards, a collection of inspiring quotes, images, and overall body positivity.

Gloria is the quirky friend that each friend group has. Her posts in Instagram are hilarious, and she exudes such confidence. She chronicles her day-to-day life, and provides hope for any young plus girl that thinks she won't lead a super awesome life. Gloria has started posting more fashion-y videos on her YouTube channel within the last few months, and I am LOVING them!

Sprinkle of Glitter
Louise, of Sprinkle of Glitter, is such a ray of sunshine. Her YouTube channel frequently features plus clothing and lookbooks that make me consistently envious of her closet. She has such a fun sense of humor and style, and I always look forward to her posts.

Loey Lane
This is the girl that has inspired me to try a bikini this summer. She features photos on her Instagram and videos on her YouTube channel of different plus brands she tests out, and does try-on posts where you can see how the clothing actually fits. Loey also does body positivity +life experience videos on her channel that are extremely relatable, and make you feel like she is just one of your friends chatting with you.

Georgina Grogan 
I have loved Georgina's blog, She Might Be Loved, for awhile now. Not only is her makeup always immaculate, but her fashion posts are so much fun to read. She has been modeling for Scarlett & Jo for awhile now, and boy does she look amazing!

A good quote can feed the soul.



Are you on a body positivity journey? Have any tips/tricks?

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Feel free to share your thoughts in a comment. I also encourage you to leave a link to your blog as I would love to read them. DISCLAIMER: I will delete any comment that I feel is mean spirited. The world needs more positivity!