Body Positivity Songs
There’s this semi-popular adage floating around that goes something like ‘our bodies are our cars, and our spirits are the driver’. In other words, your body is the main vehicle, if you will, that you’ll use to navigate through life. Any other thing that is physical in nature can be forsaken. But as for your body, from the time you’re born until the time you die, it is there with you 24/7.
So it stands to reason why such a high premium is put on feeling good in your own skin. And a holistic sense of satisfaction in that regard would also include appreciating the person looking back at you in the mirror. Of course when dealing with the topic of self-image, we must also be mindful of the fact that we are living in an age where how you look is considered to be more important than ever. It can be said that this is especially true in the types of societies that serve as a basis for the global music industry, i.e. those in which television plays an inseparable-socializing role in the lives of residents.
Body Positivity in the Music Industry
As far as the music industry is concerned, there are two sides to this coin. On one hand, the reality is that it’s pretty common knowledge for celebrity singers to undergo plastic surgery. This is especially true for females, but some males have done it also. And now, it can be further said that they’re more free to be open about it than ever. For many ladies, it becomes easier for them to tolerate constantly being in the spotlight by augmenting their looks, paying cold, hard cash for an appearance that is more mainstream acceptable.
But on the other hand, we have those who buck the system and rather revel in how they are, even if their looks do not conform to prevailing ideologies. And what said ideologies often revolve around, more than anything else, is a woman appearing thin.
Artists that Have Championed Body Positivity and Self-Love
At the forefront of those who have bucked the system in that regard in recent years would be the likes of Lizzo and Meghan Trainor. Lizzo has dropped tracks such as 2015’s “My Skin” which encourages listeners to be accepting of how they look. And overall, she is seen as a champion of heavy women – one who, excuse the French, doesn’t give AF as far as flaunting a body which many may deem as being obese.
And with that said, the song that established Meghan Trainor as a music star was 2014’s “All About that Bass”. Therein she actually celebrates being a big-bodied woman, as in possessing a body type that you may not find in fashion magazines, but one that many men appreciate nonetheless.
But the thing is that in more recent times, Trainor has lost a considerable amount of weight. She even got caught engaging in some roundabout body shaming herself. And Lizzo, as liberal as she may be, is also visibly affected by body shaming, on top of occasionally going on diets herself.
But ultimately, there is a viable reason why such discrepancies exist. Of course, it is wrong to make somebody feel bad based on their body type. And yes, this society we live in does put self-esteem affecting value on the way people look. That’s why even some artists who actually conform to the mainstream mold, like Christina Aguilera with “Beautiful” (2002) or Little Mix with “Strip” (2018), also come out with their own body positivity songs.
And others, such as TLC via “Unpretty” (1999) or Beyoncé with “Pretty Hurts” (2018), also approach the issue from a different direction, i.e. pointing to how women are compelled to be perpetually attractive and the ultimate vanity in such pursuits.
But the elephant in the room, no pun intended, is that we human beings have what scientists refer to as a body mass index (BMI). This has nothing to do with how you look in a bathing suit per se. Rather, people have an ideal, healthy weight based on their height. So if you have a singer rather encouraging listeners to be beyond that threshold, then it potentially becomes a matter of health.
For instance, Lizzo is said to be 5’10” (178 cm) and 308 lbs. (140 kg). Well if true, then, according to that previous link to MedicalNewsToday, that would place her in the ‘severely obese’ category. And yes, as far as health issues are concerned, the way she has gone about proudly showing her stuff has drawn some criticism in the past.
But at the end of the day, the goal of artists like Lizzo who take such a stance is an admirable one. Such songs are designed to mitigate the stigma attached to overweight people, particularly women, who needless to say are more vulnerable to self-image issues.
Furthermore, whereas supporting the sistren is a noble, indeed needed cause, sometimes it does feel like these tracks and the images attached to them may be taking things too far. After all, going back to the concept of feeling good in your skin, also entails the inner workings of your body being in order. So instead of just being like ‘shake what your mama gave ya’, these artists, who have the ears of the masses in their hands, could also potentially go about encouraging listeners to adopt a healthier lifestyle, which is arguably an even more viable means of mitigating self-image issues.
List of Some Famous Body Positivity Songs
Below are some of the most powerful songs that encourage self-love and body positivity. These songs are not only designed to get rid of the stigma attached to overweight/obese people but to also make people feel good about themselves by letting them know that they are beautiful just the way they look.