All eyes have been on Ariana Grande since she stepped into the spotlight on the Broadway stage at 15. Going from child star to bonafide pop star, Grande has made a name for herself with chart-topping hits, a rising beauty empire, and a sparkling personality to go along with her success. But since being in the public eye, Grande’s appearance, mainly her body weight, has become a hot topic of scrutiny on social media, one she felt the need to address.
While filming her coveted role of Glinda in John M. Chu’s upcoming Wicked, Grande addressed the speculation circulating around her appearance in a TikTok.
“I just wanted to address your concerns about my body and talk a little bit about what it means to be a person with a body and to be seen and to be paid such close attention to.” said Grande. “I think we could be, I think we should be, gentler and less comfortable commenting on people’s bodies, no matter what — if you think you’re saying something good or well-intentioned, whatever it is, healthy, unhealthy, big, small, this, that, sexy, nonsense — we just should really work towards not doing that as much.”
Grande went on to address that there are different ways to be beautiful and healthy. She also addressed that the comparisons of her body today versus what she looked like before didn’t tell the entire story of her health journey.
“I know personally, for me, the body that you’ve been comparing my current body to was the unhealthiest version of my body,” she continued. “I was on a lot of antidepressants and drinking on them and eating poorly. And at the lowest point of my life when I looked the way you consider my ‘healthy,’ that in fact wasn’t my healthy.”
In a day and age where a celebrity’s image can be picked apart for all to witness via social media is nerve wracking, to say the least. But that same scrutiny extends to everyday people posting a picture of themselves online. Whether social media users are comparing themselves to what they see online or are subjected to critiques on their body, it all takes a toll on a person’s mental and physical health.
A 2019 study highlighted a correlation between social media usage, negative body image, and disordered eating. Additionally, more studies continue to highlight the impact of negative body image and eating disorders play on LGBTQ+ community. A 2016 study showed that queer men have higher rates of negative body image than their heterosexual counterparts and transgender adults have a higher risk for eating disorders.
The “Positions” singer added, “You never know what someone is going through…even if you are coming from a loving place and a caring place, that person probably is working on it or has a support system that they are working on it with and you never know. So be gentle with each other and with yourselves.”
We couldn’t agree more.