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Skinny vs. Curvy

I was reading one of the lingerie trade magazines on Sunday morning and saw page after page of skinny, boney women in lingerie. This particular publication isn’t always that bad, and to be fair, more and more companies are heading in the direction of “real” women. However this issue was extreme. There was one model that was bone-thin with almost nothing between her skin and her skeleton. The angles of her body were almost freakish as she would thrust out a hip or turn her body at a certain angle. I sat back and thought of all the Rubens paintings and how being round and healthy was considered attractive in sixteenth and seventeenth centuries and how people today, especially in the fashion world, would disagree. They might look at a Ruben and wonder how those voluptuous figures were ever considered attractive or desirable.

I wondered if our kids or grandkids would look back at our old magazines years from now and see the models with protruding hip bones and rib cages and hollow cheeks and be amazed by what we thought was “sexy”. Throughout history the feminine ideal was curvy, fleshy and plump. Now we’re into this skinny = sexy phase, with no room to appreciate the incredibly rich and vast array of differences. Different body types, different shapes, different hair and skins colors.

Whether we like to admit it or not, the media still influences trends and tells us what is “in” and “attractive”. As I was trying to step back and look at these pictures from a totally objective stand point (i.e. an alien landing on Earth and being shown a series of photographs, or someone from the past time-traveling into the future) I wondered, would they pick out these skinny, angular, women as the most attractive? Or would they pick the ones who were rounder and curvier? Of course in my opinion, the fuller figures that are luscious, sensual and soft and feminine would be the obvious choice. But then, it’s hard for me to be objective. I love hips and curves!

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  1. Agnes Benko
    03/11/09

    Skinny women are unhealthy and that is why we find them so unattractive. Thin women are just as prone to ill health as an obese individual. Their mistake in life is that they both do not eat a balanced diet. Sound nutrition with a lean exercised body is beautiful because it is healthy. We are attracted to healthy bodies. Healthy skin, healthy hair, muscular limbs that denote an active lifestyle in some kind of physical sports, strong nails all add up to an attractive curvaceous body.

    The woman above in the white dress on the top right is an absolutely gorgeous creature. She is the kind of woman one doesn’t forget. She is a very beautiful girl from head to all I can see of her and doesn’t need some phony publicity to sell us the idea that she is. She’s stunning and would catch anybody’s eye who saw her walking down the street. And I don’t mean necessarily in what she’s got on in this photograph because she is modelling lingerie. But this same curvaceous woman would catch the eye of any man because she has a stunning figure. There is more to a woman then just her face and hair. She has to have a healthy looking figure with some plumpness to it without being fat. Afterall curves are round, not angular. In all truth men still consider this woman’s body type ideal. The skinny one on the left just got a modelling job and will be forgotten.

    Hollywood, vainly ambitious modelling agencies and some obsurd dress designers sometimes try to sell us the idea that the people they have in their employ and/or on their books with stick like figures are what the public needs to be told is beautiful.

    The public knows without being told what we consider beautiful. It is not skin and bone models with shirts unbottoned down to their navels and skirts opened up to the top of their thighs posing like whores and referred to as “SEXY”. Is ‘sexy’ synonymous with attractive? Are whorish women what we in society want ourselves and our daughters to emulate? I AM FED UP WITH SKINNY MODELS SELLING SEX IN THE FASHION INDUSTRY ACTING LIKE WHORES. Lust and silicon breasts cannot substitute for a naturally healthy beautiful body.

  2. LovelyLucinda
    03/11/09

    This almost made me sick to my stomach, that skinny model, oh my goodness!

  3. marley
    03/11/09

    Thank you for posting this. This has really changed my outlook on my own body. When I look at the photos side by side I can’t help by naturally like the curvy girls better. It’s an innate feeling I got from looking at them side by side and now I don’t feel so bad when I am standing next to my size 4 best friend =)

  4. Mike
    03/12/09

    Give me the woman on the left 6 days a week and twice on Sunday. Stick figures look nothing like a real woman should and have all the sex appeal of a survivor from starvation. There is nothing attractive about skin streched over protruding bones and joints, I need a woman with some soft flesh and dangerous curves. America is waking up, now when will the Fashion World?

  5. Leona
    03/12/09

    what you say about skinny women is just as rude and disgusting as when someone calls a curvy woman fat. while YOU may have the perception of someone who is skinny as unhealthy, some people would say having a few extra pounds is unhealthy! what is beautiful to one person, is ugly to another — and vice versa. what is important to remember is that everyone who lets their natural figure and natural features show is beautiful, whether that be meat or bones, freckles or clear, straight or curly!

    so bravo for showcasing the beauty of women with curves, but shame on you for denegrating women with bones!!!

  6. Jennifer
    03/13/09

    I do not think anyone is saying that skinny women are “ugly”. The post was simply a question posed to the readers. “Do we know, without being told, what is beautiful?”

    Everyone has their own opinion of what is beautiful. The readers of this site obviously prefer a curvier woman and nothing is rude or disgusting about that.

  7. C.I.
    03/16/09

    Am in incorrect, or did France atleast consider legislation that targeted and looked to restrict advertising where the women were too thin, thereby setting a poor health example? Knowing Paris is still the fashion capitol of the world and thin=sexy (used to live there) most men on the street would tell you a “healthy” woman was far more sexy. But until the high-profile fashion houses begin designing for women of larger sizes, it will continue to be “starvation look” is in… too bad…

  8. Forrest
    03/25/09

    Let me tell you that most men (if not all) are sick of the “stick figure” model type chicks that we are being force fed (heh) by the lamestream media. All of my friends (with the exception of one, who’s strange anyway) prefer a girl that has a voluptuous body, hands down, over the “stick-girl [boy...who can tell]“. One thing that most all of us dislike though (except for that one strange guy, of course) are “tramp stamps” (tattoos) and body piercings. Please girls, don’t do that ugly stuff to yourselves, it’s NOT a turn on to most of us [normal] guys, there’s a lot to be said for “wholesomeness” which is another big turn on for us.

  9. Visitor
    04/02/09

    Women shouldn’t aim to look skinny (when they’re naturally not skinny), but also, many women can not look like – let’s say Kelly Brook, simply because they do not have her horglass body type, her bust-waist-hip ratio and her bone structure.

    There is a site which named exactly like this post :)
    They discuss the healty skinny and healty curvy bodies based on celebrities. Give it a try!
    http://www.skinnyvscurvy.com

  10. missfitpinup82
    04/28/09

    Curves are beautiful!!!! I love my curves…

  11. kendhra
    06/21/09

    you know what someone **** you alright ur just one of the many shallow people that pefer a flat ass chest and a flat ass to someone with true real body and i”ve seen guys check out girls thicker than me okay!! so no guys dont lie when they like curvy girls they have taste they want girls that actually HAVE a body so go pick out ur girlfriends bones or your own bones ****

    sorry for the language

  12. SkinnyMinnie
    06/21/09

    i think the problem people have in general is that we’re prone to making comparisons and choosing one side or the other (i.e. skinny girls OR curvy girls). the problem with that is that the losing side is going to suffer. if people say, “fat chicks are totally not sexy!” then there are curvy girls who are going to get their feelings hurt, everyone knows that. after all, there’s a ridiculous amount of discrimination against heavier folk in this day and age.
    but then people assume that the way to correct that discrimination is to swing to the other end of the spectrum and say that skinny girls aren’t sexy. just as curvy girls can be genetically predisposed to be heavier, skinny girls can be the same way. i’ve been a petite woman all my life (5’3″ and never weighed more than 110 lbs). it’s not that i chose to be this way or i diet to be this way, it’s just my normal body type. that being said, i can’t help but feel insecure reading comments on here saying that skinny women are unhealthy and therefore unattractive, or that the vast majority of men would choose a curvy girl over a skinny girl any day, or that we’re naturally inclined to think that voluptuous women are more desirable. is there no happy medium?
    i guess what i’m saying is i’d like to see women celebrated as a whole for their womanhood, not separated into categories and glorified in those individual groups.

  13. Anonymous
    01/16/10

    Not fair to generalize skinny women as unhealthy. I’ve tried all my life to gain weight because I wanted some curves, but it is just not meant to be. It’s just the way I was born. Same with voluptuous women who can’t get stick thin. I don’t approve of women starving themselves to meet some media ideal and I get SICK to death of people congratulating me on my thinness as though it’s some sort of accomplishment. Why can’t we all just get over this and be happy with ourselves? Put the diet drink makers and the plastic surgeons out of business. People come in all shapes and sizes and there will always be someone to love them and find them attractive.

  14. jamie
    02/25/10

    to SkinnyMinnie and Leona: I understand and agree with you that women on the thin side should not be denigrated, but what I think you fail to understand here is that as a thin woman, even if you are unhealthily thin, you are congratulated on the way you look daily. A woman who is on the other side of the spectrum, with a few more pounds than average, conversely, is ridiculed daily for the way she looks. how is it that our society has such a double standard about the thin side of unhealthy weight? People have no hesitation to call a size 10-12 woman “fat” or “disgusting” but when a woman has a body fat count so low that she likely doesn’t menstruate anymore, she is “hot”!!! People can be healthy and beautiful at any weight. Size 0 or size 16. And for goddess’ sake, a size 12 woman is not FAT! Just for future reference people, calling someone fat or thick or heavy is an insult. I hear people calling curvy women big or fat and it makes me sad, especially when these terms are used by people who think that curvy is beautiful! People wake up, it is our society that is sick!!! We are taught that thin is the only way to be beautiful. If you are anything but, you are fat, and often disgraced and shuffled to the outskirts of society. I think that we need to start a campaign: HEALTHY IS BEAUTIFUL, AT ANY WEIGHT!!! And we need to boycot the institutions and brands who try to convince us otherwise. Demand HEALTHY models, HEALTHY actresses, HEALTHY role models. It is not about thin or curvy, it is about being the best YOU you can be. It is the only way things will ever change…

  15. Aubree
    02/25/10

    I’ve been plus-size my whole life, and I have to say that it’s nice to start seeing plus-size models in magazines (other then plus-size specific ones). My bestfriend of 20 years has been skinny her entire life, it’s funny because we never competed with each other or thought bad things about each other, we each have our own defining qualities that make us sexy. Yes sometimes I think the models they show in magazines and/or in the media can be thinner then is medically possible lol, and that brings me to my point, many of these images we see are airbrushed and redone. I can bring up several occasions where even movie stars like Demi Moore looked awful missing a hip in a cover shoot or Kim Kardashian with her cellulite on her legs (GASP) lol. So I think, not only is the media to blame, but perhaps those people who photoshop alittle too much! ^.^ It would be really nice to see women of all shapes and sizes in magazines in designer clothing because the truth of the matter is, money comes in all shapes and sizes, and if the plus size woman likes that dress, she’s gonna buy it. I think they (the media and clothing companies) limit their market when they make things only in size 0-10. Know what I mean?

  16. Anonymous
    03/15/10

    alot of guys like their girls curvy!

  17. ShivC
    03/23/10

    well…i dont know what to think really. i’m 14 but im really curvy and everybody always tells me i have a really good shape, but this girl in school who i havent spoken to in years has been telling people a whole set of crap about my ‘fat butt with streck marks and cellulite’…and im thinking omg thats SO HURTFUL!!!! i cried!!…..but the bottom line is…back in the day it was voluptuous…up to a few months ago it was skinny=sexy…and now its curvy!!!!……..YOU JUST GOT TO LEARN TO LOVE YOURSELF!!

  18. Mark
    05/25/10

    In the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries women were painted that way because they were socially confined to be lazy sex objects who just laid around waiting for men to have sex with them. They were not healthy. Is that really something to aspire to look like or support? They are antifeminist.

    The skinny girl in those pictures has more sexy shape and curves than the chubby one, who just looks big, bland, and shapeless. The big models honestly would not get a second or even a first look from a most men.

    Skinny women, not anorexic, are healthier and have much more sexy shape to their bodies, with sexy toned arms, legs, and firm perky butts and boobs…that’s sexy and that’s what most men want. And regardless of men, bodies are naturally designed to be active and lean, which looks very attractive.

  19. Rini
    06/17/10

    Mark, what a conceited nasty little spit fire you are! Most men that I know prefer their women a little curvy, and I find that the plus size women in this article are very attractive. People like you are what cause young girls to puke up their dinners in an effort to “appease” this generalized idea of beauty. Your opinions are quite thoughtless and I find your commentary completely ridiculous. Skinny and curvy can be beautiful, but what is honestly more natural for the human body? For a woman, who by nature are designed to bear children and nurse them, be skinny as a rail, with bones protruding everywhere, or a woman is rounded and has nice breasts, stomach and thighs? And no, I don’t mean morbidly obese, but sizes 12 – 18 are quite common, and when proportioned, are very stunning.

    So, are you really going to argue with mother nature? A woman’s body was never meant to be a size 0. Women were created to have shape for a purpose. Lifeless emaciated figures propose what ideal? Other than the fact that they starve themselves?

    Ugh! People like you make me sick!

  20. tony "mrbbwlover" maddox
    07/21/10

    absolutely, hands down, the sexy women are the ones with the curves! not the little bumps on their chests or the little lumps on their lower backs. the women that drive me absolutely crazy are the “curvy” women that know they are sexy and aren’t afraid to show it! they have confidence and are vouluptuous… no one can hold a candle to them. you absolutely rock!

  21. tiredofthis
    09/01/10

    I am sooo happy to see people embracing the curvy side of ladies instead of the stick skinny toothpick chicks… I have been very self conscious of myself for the past few month because i am not the size 5 i used to be after having a baby. In two years i went from being 5’5 125 to 153 then after having a baby went up to 163. I was sick of myself and disgusted when i looked in the mirror because i don’t look like i used to and my soon to be ex husband always made it a point to tell me that i don’t… What bothers me about my body so much is not the way it looks because i loooove loove love my curves, but i think its more about the number. going from a size 5 to a 15 kinda blows your mind when you look at the clothes you used to wear.

  22. katie
    11/05/10

    okay id like to DEFEND SKINNY WOMEN. fat girls are really starting to piss me off with this curvy excuse. they can make fun of me and call to too skinny and blablabla but they are FAT. they are unhealthy and now they think its okay but they are so seexxyy and “cuurrvvvyy” i RUN cross country and eat healthy, im confident and feel beautiful. im not anorexic with bones sticking out and im not flat as a board just because im thin. id also like to say you can be SKINNY AND CURVY at the same time. curvy should mean big boobs and butt… i dont think tummy rolls should be considered curvy. that should be considered unhealthy and unattractive.

  23. Lizzie
    11/05/10

    SKINNY GIRLS CAN BE HEALTHY. I AM NATURALLY SMALL BONED AND I RUN AND EAT A VERY HEALTHY DIET. THAT DOESNT MEAN JUST SALAD. I EAT MEAT, VEGETABLES, FRUITS, AND EVEN SOME JUNK FOOD BUT I DONT GAIN WEIGHT. I CAN EAT BURGER KING AND GAIN NOTHING THATS JUST HOW IM BUILT. IM WRITING IN CAPS BECAUSE I HOPE THIS IS READ. IM BEAUTIFUL AND I DONT NEED CURVY GIRLS TELLING ME IM UNATTRACTIVE. THAT GIRL IN THE WHITE DRESS IS A CHUNKY MONKEY AND THE AFRICAN AMERICAN WOMAN IS FAT. STOP TRYING TO MAKE THE WORLD THINK UR SEXY SO U CAN BRING DOWN THE SKINNY GIRLS U ARE JEALOUS OF.

  24. Regina
    11/05/10

    i think the perfect body is a skinny curvy one. look at the Victorias Secret models they are very slim and skinny but they also have some killer curves. those pictures of “curvy woman” are just overweight…. if ur fat work out…dont bring down the healthy girls

  25. stacy
    11/12/10

    I find both pictures to be unattractive. Sorry.

  26. Rhem
    12/01/10

    well, i personally dont find either of the image sets too attractive as theyre both edging toward unhealthy, but in honesty the skinny girls in the above images are not really “too” thin, close yeah, but not unhealthily so. and as for the girls in rubens paintings, little history lesson for everyone, they were considered beautiful then, because looking like that was a sign of wealth: the ability to sit about all day and having enough food to eat as you wished, during a time when a large population was broke. the problem with models is, going in both directions to extremes is bad, in one case they under eat and starve themselves, and in another they over indulge and have a lack of restraint. it would be nice to see a model that was healthy, not excessively fat, nor excessively thin, but actually muscle toned, well fleshed, and happy looking. from my point of view these things are silly and would be more sensible to actually show people who understand moderation in both aspects, the models would be more deserving of respect as well.

  27. jennifer
    09/11/11

    i love my size but too be honest their really is no healthy balance between living healthy and being sickly skinny you can be thin and have a great ful filling life or you can once again slip into the un healthy catagory you can be a healthy weight if your a size zero you can be a well built strong size zero skinny women are not the enemy here neither are curvy girl’s were all women since when did we start hating each other because of the need too be skinny just accept you for you all i have too say in the process bye or you can be skinny fat which is when a young man or woman isn’t living up too their expectations of staying healthy finally bye

  28. Zoë Bennett
    12/03/11

    Thanks Agnes Benko . I really appreciate it when some fat bitch tells me how unattractive and disgusting I am, simply because I, unlike you, actually DO eat a balanced diet. And you know what? I try to gain weight because admittedly, I’d like to be a little more curvy, but I can’t, so when women like you remind me on a daily basis how unattractive I am because I can’t gain weight, I realize that you just wish you were skinny. It’s not a retaliation against fat-girl-hate, because it’s so politically incorrect to criticize over weight women, so it has to be jealousy.
    Obviously your intense hatred for skinny women stems from when you hated your body, but some psychologist told you to love yourself for who you are and you so angrily force yourself to be satisfied with your body, you end up lashing out at skinny women yo convince yourself how wonderful you are.

  29. Anonymous
    12/13/11

    You say overweight or curvy people cant help who they are and shouldn’t be discriminated by bony or skinny people, where in reality you just discriminated against them. There are some people in the world who cant help their weight and gaining weight is hard no matter how many calories they eat. Yes overweight people might develop an eating disorder like anorexia nervosa or bulimia but people with a super fast metabolism might develop binge eating. i see comments all over facebook and twitter and tumblr. etc about saying “you see that chubby girl over there, her mom had to talk her out of cutting herself three times this week, stop bullying and prevent obese abuse” or “Obese abuse is wrong and should be stopped, not everybody can be a perfect skinny girl like you” but never once have i heard anyone saying “we get it its hard to gain weight but its okay because your friends are here for you” I am a 13 year old middle schooler who is 17 lbs. underweight. And yeah i wear 3 pairs of leggings underneath my jeans and big sweatshirts and grub out on candy all day and some people may say its for attention but i do it to fit it…

  30. Amber
    10/30/12

    STOP WITH THE MUDD SLINGING!!!! you’re all gorgeous, and p.s. to the people saying that “curvy” girls are fat, that is hurtful….i’m a thicker girl, i know this…i work out everyday and keep a balanced diet but my body just doesn’t lose weight, i can’t control or change that and it hurts to be called gross/disgusting for something that i can’t control…and skinny girls, i have always-and still do-wish i looked like you. I’ve cried over it and it hurts, you’re viewed as extremely desired in society meanwhile i’m viewed as some chubby “lazy” chick even though i try really hard to lose weight….so please, everyone just stop

  31. Megan
    04/18/13

    I am a woman with curves but i would rather be skinny. not all skinny girls are unhealthy but guys rather that curvey look on a woman.

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    07/05/13

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