By 08/02/2021February 10th, 2021No Comments
sociably blog - rise of the body positive influencer


You may or may not have noticed, but we’re (thankfully) in a new era of social media appreciation for the human body.

Hashtag #fitspo has been replaced by #bodypositive as influencers are taking to using their platforms to promote self love for all shapes, sizes and skin tones.

And it couldn’t have come at a better time. The rise of the body positive influencer represents a global trend towards shedding old systems that no longer serve a collective good. The #BlackLivesMatter movement, continued positive LGBTQ promotion, preferred pronouns, and a calling for a radical overhaul regarding climate change, are a few other examples.

Kicking Diet Culture

For what seems like a really long time, social media has fuelled ‘diet culture’. Feeds have been full to the brim with apparently perfect (whatever that means) bodies. Influencers promoting the latest tea or shake that will rid you of your unwanted fat. Celebrities revealing what diet they’re on this fortnight. Self-proclaimed dieticians telling you what carbs to avoid… the list goes on.

But attitudes are shifting (hurrah), giving rise to a new wave of influencers. People that have a hell of a lot of love and appreciation for what makes us healthy and happy, regardless of how our bodies look.

In a society where aspiring to a certain way of looking is deeply entrenched, it’s going to take more than a few hashtags to really make a significantly impactful change. The ever-unattainable quest for perfection is a journey many embark on from teenagehood (or even earlier). Mainstream media – TV, films, magazines, ads, radio – tell us how we should look and why. That is, that slim bodies are attractive, and will bring us more success.

However, social media is everywhere, and if the body positive movement can infiltrate the minds of even just a few – especially children and teenagers – it will have achieved a great thing. And we’d hazard a guess that it’s doing more than that. As we write this, there are 14.9 million posts on Instagram tagged with #bodypositive.

Normalising Normal Bodies

This new wave of body love seeks to make a change in a few ways;

  • Stamp out diet culture, and the negative impact it has on the body and mind
  • Expose the damaging effects of extreme dieting, like juice cleansing, calorie limiting, and fasting
  • Expose the reality of the ‘perfect’ yet unrealistic body (thanks to clever lighting, posing, Facetune and Photoshop, etc.)
  • Ignite a shift in the perception of what ‘beauty’ is, for example, normalising cellulite, voluptuous bodies, skin of all shades, and radical self love

sociably blog - body positive influencer img1

According to Very Well Mind,“Body positivity refers to the assertion that all people deserve to have a positive body image, regardless of how society and popular culture view ideal shape, size, and appearance. … helping people build confidence and acceptance of their own bodies, and addressing unrealistic body standards.”

The body positive influencer proudly puts on display all that would have not been considered ‘Insta-worthy’ before this new movement. Beyond just fat versus thin, the body positivity movement asserts that all bodies are beautiful and highlights that the normal perceived ‘standard’ of beauty is most certainly not standard.

Instagram Versus Reality

#transformationtuesday used to be the go-to trend for women (and men) looking for body inspo. But more recently, #instagramvsreality has exploded in popularity.

Influencers, many of them previously #fitfluencers who gained their following after their dramatic weight loss and body transformation, began using 30-second before and after photos to expose the reality behind capturing perfection. And the trend took off. Influencers of all walks of life now regularly use the hashtag to show that photos can lie, and that they have the same bumps, lumps and imperfections that all human bodies do.

Celebrating Race

Compared to the often narcissistic image we’ve become accustomed to on platforms like Instagram, body positive influencers are both a sigh of relief and a breath of fresh air.

What’s more, the movement not only brings more acceptance of rounder physiques – it’s also helping to shine a light on common racial discriminations.Influencers like Kellie Brown and Stephanie Yeboah prove that, yes – you can be big, black and beautiful. And their collective 400, 000 followers are a testament to that.

Body Positive Influencers and Activists You Should Follow

The body positive movement also opens its arms to influencers with disabilities, members of the LGBQT community and well, anyone who stretches the confines of the mainstream perception of what does and does not belong on the cover of a magazine. 

Here are 5 influencers leading the way. 

1. Danae Mercer @danaemercer

Cellulite and stretch marks are now trending on Instagram thanks to the social media shakeup created by body positive influencers like Danae. Her feed is an exposé of just how powerful good lighting and the right pose are when it comes to portraying the perfect (i.e. faked) image.

She advocates self-love, body acceptance and #nofilter images to her 2.1 million followers. Her posts are inspiring and powerfully honest, with thought-provoking captions and reality of the seemingly glamorous life of an influencer.

2. Kellie Brown @itsmekellieb


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A post shared by Kellie Brown (@itsmekellieb)

This marketing maven turned style guru advocates for fashion and style at all sizes. Her Instagram feed shows her living her best life, with honest, fun, body-loving captions. Kellie is also the host of the @faticonpodcast, creator of the #fatatfashionweek hashtag, and found of andigetdressed.com.

Body positive influencers like Kellie are disrupting the online space with a message that resonates with millions of people who don’t ‘fit’ the mould when it comes to beauty and style.

3. Madalin Giogetta @madalingiogetta

Although by no means breaking the mould of non-conventional body types, Madalin Giogetta is an Instagram ‘before and after’ queen turned body positive advocate. She is using her sizable 800k+ follower platform to shine a light on the damage of #dietculture. She discusses her vulnerability and how she was sucked into an unsustainable and unrealistic standard of body image. 

Madalin was one of the first ‘Insta celebs’ to have a ‘public’ breakdown on how miserable she was, and the world of extreme obsession and anxiety she lived in. She now advocates a balanced lifestyle, and is also not scared to call out those trying to ride the wave of body positivity movement simply for the likes. 

4. Zach Miko


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A post shared by Zach Miko (@zachmiko)

Of course, men are arguably as easily as affected by diet culture as women. Zach is the self-proclaimed ‘1st brawn’ repped by IMG Models. His Instagram is a welcoming and refreshing feed of relatable body-positive images, often of himself top-half naked. He confesses he was a kid who “was afraid to take off their shirt” and, despite being an international model, doesn’t take himself too seriously.

Not only is Zach an inspiration to other men and dads by normalising the male body, he’s also breaking the modelling industry mould – and it’s wonderful to see.

5. Stephanie Yeboyah @stephanieyeboyah


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A post shared by Stephanie Yeboah (@stephanieyeboah)

Stephanie Yeboyah is a Body Image and Self Love Advocate and author of the book Fattily Ever After. Her feed is a representation of her larger-than-life outlook. She’s not afraid to highlight ‘hush hush’ subjects like dark inner thighs and hyper-pigmentation.

More body positive hashtags to follow

Follow these body positive hashtags and fill your feed with stuff that makes you feel good.


This is a spin on #bodypositive, which is really the OG of the whole body positive movement. Take your pick of nearly millions of posts on Instagram and Twitter of men, women and non-binary people celebrating their bodies.


Beyond the unique and the disempowered, one of the other powerful messages that has come from this new wave of the body positive influencer is the call to #normalisenormalbodies. You don’t need to be different to have a voice. The simple intention to advocate for self love, authenticity and radical acceptance of both self and others is at the heart of what the body positivity movement is all about.


The self-love hashtag will give you inspiration for more than just your body. #selflove encompasses your mind, health, and overall well-being, and the things you can (and deserve to) do to take care of your whole self.


This one’s quite self explanatory. Lots of curly hair, on lots of curves. Beautiful.


Body neutrality encourages people to focus on what their bodies can do, regardless of how they look. It’s an empowering concept that can help those who may struggle with always being body positive. Feeling just okay with your body is enough.