A zealous and humble celebrity makeup artist and educator. An Academy Award-nominated actress and deviant. Two seemingly different individuals with one common goal this past week: using their platforms to speak out against body shaming.
Like many other public figures, Philly-bred celebrity makeup artist, Tatiana Ward aka “BeatFaceHoney” and Empire actress Gabourey Sidibe, had to endure what the average woman would cringe at experiencing. What made them stand out, however, were their bold reactions, which were noteworthy and capable of making you question your own courage.
Just two days ago, Ward daringly posted a photo on Instagram of her shirt pulled up and addressed the “complete and utter a-holes who are women” who have been commenting on her pictures asking her if she’s pregnant. Among other things, she reminded them that she’s a female who’s sensitive about her “s**t” and that she’s not pregnant, but chubby, like a number of other women in 2015 [according to today’s standards]. What sealed the feisty deal was her closing her caption with a post script that told her shamers to tell their men to stay out of her DM. Ward’s post was confidence at its finest and most inspirational.
To think that a woman who uses her platform to teach and spread nothing but beauty, love and inspiration would have to endure such negativity is disturbing, yet not surprising. Even more beautiful though was the support Ward received from other celebrities such as Questlove and Ariana Grande, with the latter writing a comment telling her that she looked gorgeous.
Prior to that incident came arguably the most classy and confident body-shaming clap back of this year. Sidibe, who is no stranger to having to address ignorant body critics, did not hesitate in responding to the insulting memes that had surfaced online following an intimate scene of her Empire character Becky with her on-screen boyfriend, MC J Poppa played by actor Mo McRae.
First came the classy: “I had the most fun ever filming that scene even though I was nervous,” Sidibe told Entertainment Weekly. “I felt sexy and beautiful and I felt like I was doing a good job.”
Then came the clap back: “I’m not sure how anyone could hate on love,” Sidibe continued. “But that’s okay. You may have your memes. Honestly, I’m at work too busy to check Twitter anyway. #Booked”
I think it’s safe to say that we were all stuck in a brief moment of awe and admiration after watching that microphone drop.
Can someone call TIME and tell them to revise their 100 Most Influential People list?
We applaud and appreciate you, Tatiana Ward and Gabourey Sidibe, for continuing to fearlessly stand up for what’s right and for being the successful and inspirational role models you are to the millions of young women watching.
Now signing off with the reminder: Don’t wait for the world to recognize your greatness, live it and let the world catch up to you.