A fitness blogger is tackling the illusion of social media by sharing “unflattering” photos of herself online.
Tesia Kline was taking photos for her Instagram when she noticed one of the photos accentuated the cellulite on her legs. Instead of retaking the photo, she decided to share the snap to her 95,000 followers.
Kline posted the photo next to a image that was taken with “good lighting” with the caption, “my legs” and “also my legs.”
Kline, a 27-year-old student from Alabama, included a positive message to her followers, writing “Sometimes your ‘body goals’ may not always be what they appear to be… Thank you angles and lighting for helping me see that I’m still fcking FLAWSOME from every point of view!! [sic] And so are YOU!”
Kline has dedicated herself to promoting body positivity and says she feels compelled to normalize body “imperfections” on social media.
“I wanted to share it because I feel like there are millions of women out there who are so insecure about something that is so normal,” Kline told Cosmopolitan U.K. “They try to ‘cure’ it like it’s some kind of disorder.”
Kline knows first hand the pressures women feel to drastically alter their appearance to be deemed “beautiful.” Back in 2011, a DJ at a club fat-shamed Kline for dancing onstage. The humiliation caused her to begin feverishly exercising and she began following a strict diet.
After losing 50 pounds, Kline began competing in body-building competitions for several years, but eventually, fitness became an unhealthy obsession.
“I was never satisfied with my body no matter how lean I got,” Kline revealed. “I finally realized that my self-worth is not based on what I look like. You don’t have to be shredded to be happy or healthy.”
Kline eventually quit competing, and now follows a balanced diet and works out a few times a week.
“Life is way too short to worry about something so meaningless as cellulite or the negative opinions of others,” Kline says. “It’s up to us to just accept ourselves, enjoy, and live our lives to the fullest.”