It’s no secret the diet industry thrives on women being insecure about their bodies. Even amid the economic losses during the pandemic, the US weight loss market was estimated to have raked in upwards of $71 billion in 2020. Girls are exposed to unrealistic images of women’s bodies starting at a very young age. Even celebrities aren’t immune to those effects. Last year, an image of Billie Eilish wearing a tank top was attacked by body shamers online — and that hit home for the 19-year-old.
Eilish recent opened up about her “horrible body relationship” in a cover story for Vanity Fair, in which she discussed the recent viral image, concluding that the “internet hates women.” She also revealed how she’s been personally affected by society’s unrealistic standards for women’s bodies:
“I think that the people around me were more worried about it than I was, because the reason I used to cut myself was because of my body. To be quite honest with you, I only started wearing baggy clothes because of my body. I was really, really glad though, mainly, that I’m in this place in my life, because if that had happened three years ago, when I was in the midst of my horrible body relationship—or dancing a ton, five years ago, I wasn’t really eating. I was, like, starving myself. I remember taking a pill that told me that it would make me lose weight and it only made me pee the bed—when I was 12. It’s just crazy. I can’t even believe, like I—wow. Yeah. I thought that I would be the only one dealing with my hatred for my body, but I guess the internet also hates my body. So that’s great.”
This wasn’t the first time Eilish has opened up about her reason for wearing baggy clothes in public. In 2019, She told Vogue Australia that she wears clothes “800 sizes bigger” because it “gives nobody the opportunity to judge what your body looks like.” “I don’t want to give anyone the excuse of judging, and not—and it’s not like everyone’s going to judge you, but they all do in their head, like even if they’re not trying to,” she said.
Read Eilish’s full cover story here.