“Do You Wear Shapewear?” | My Plus Size Feelings on Spanx


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CW: Discussion of weight, weight loss, body image, etc.

I like to host “Ask Me Anything” sessions on my Instagram every once and a while, and recently a reader asked, “Do you wear Spanx?”

I got that question, and my face squinched up a bit. This isn’t the first time I’ve been asked this. And I’ve avoided discussing it.

Here’s the thing: Talking about Spanx or weight loss in ~Body Positive Blogger Land~ can be really effing weird, and it can paint a target on your back.

No one is ever “body positive enough,” it seems.

So when I got this question, I knew I WANTED to answer it, but my answer is layered and more than a little contradictory. Hence, a blog post.

Yes, I Wear Spanx.

I carry my weight in my stomach, and I have pranced all over the internet in two-piece swimsuits – no Spanx in sight. I’ve shared photos that have shown my lower belly in trousers, and I’ve had to delete my fair share of trolls.

Welcome to being a fat woman on the internet!

I wear the high-rise shorts Spanx.

I wear the high-rise and mid-thigh Spanx, they’re around $74.

I Wear Spanx, Sometimes.

But sometimes, I wear Spanx. Maybe because I want something to fit more smoothly in photos, or because I’m going to a place or event where I already feel REALLY out of place for being plus size. Or I want my tummy to stay PUT.

Sometimes I wear Spanx because my belly is too big for a garment that fits well everywhere else, and sometimes I wear Spanx to fit in better with the world.

Not wearing Spanx. <3

I know the “correct” answer would be to say, “THIS IS MY BODY, SO DEAL WITH IT! MY BELLY IS BEAUTIFUL!” But, TBH, being a #BoPoWarrior can get exhausting, and sometimes I just wanna network. Without side glances at my stomach.

I find myself wearing Spanx to a lot of business-related events, because I know that fat people earn less and have a harder time finding work. I’m out here trying to make that living!

Spanx and Feminism

It’s weird when we do a deep dive on this topic, from a feminist perspective. On the one hand, I know that wearing Spanx is a product of the patriarchy and its ideals on what my body looks like.

On the other hand, I get really ticked off when I imagine people judging me for wearing it.

Body Autonomy?

In my own politics, I’ve moved away from viewing body positivity (as a political framework) in black and white. I’m still mulling over my own politics (stay tuned), but I’ve arrived at using “Body Autonomy” to describe my personal take.

At the end of the day, over everything else, I believe that people have the right to do whatever the heck they want with their body. From getting lip fillers to having body hair to wearing Spanx to implanting horns on their dang head.

It’s your body. Do you.

It’s my body, and I’ll be wearing Spanx when I feel like it.

No More Apologies – But More Transparency

Reading back through this post, it does seem defensive and apologetic. Ah, well. Here we are.

That all said, I do want you to know what’s up – so i’m going to start noting in photos when I’m wearing Spanx. I know that folks follow diverse bodies on social media intentionally, so I think that will be helpful.

AS always, I appreciate your question on social media! Join my email list to stay in touch!

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