Real Women Share What Body Positivity Means to Them in Our #WhatIModel Campaign

We want to know: What do you model?


"Every body, every age, every beautiful": That's the tagline for this year’s Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issue, which features the most inclusive cast of models yet—from 63-year-old bombshell Christie Brinkley to powerful athletes like Simone Biles and Serena Williams. Here at Health, we are all for celebrating body diversity and positivity, which is why we've teamed up with SI and the Instagram community @WomenIRL (which are also owned by our parent company, Time Inc.) to launch the "What I Model" campaign.

The goal: to create a forum for women to share with each other, and the world, the qualities they embody. You can join the movement by donning your favorite bathing suit and recording a short video (a minute or less) as you finish the sentence "I model ____." Then post it to Instagram with the hashtags #WhatIModel and #LoveYourSwimsuit.

The editor behind the SI Swimsuit issue, MJ Day, kicked off the campaign yesterday with her own video: "I model determination," she said, standing in her bikini and holding her two-year-old son. "I'm determined to get out the message that there is not a singular definition of beauty."

Since then more women have been jumping on board with their own empowering clips. Scroll down to get inspired by just a few of those women below.

In the caption to her post, Alex admitted that shooting her video was harder than she thought. But she's glad she did it: "I am here in my bikini to encourage other moms to wear their bikinis also. We may have some stretch marks. We may be a little looser than we want to be. But we're still beautiful and we still deserve to wear our favorite bikinis. And that's why I'm going to wear mine."

Health's very own Julia Naftulin models self-love: "I believe appreciating your mind and your body in spite of any flaws is the best way to achieve a healthy lifestyle and inspire others to do the same."

Melissa says she models for all her fellow moms: “From weight gain to stretch marks to tantrums to feeling completely lost, moms do so much for their children,” she says. “Be strong, be confident, and feel beautiful, because you are beautiful.”

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"I model my pride in being a woman of color," says Asia, who also happens to be a model by career. Her hope is to spread "the message of not only size diversity but ethnic diversity as well, because that's super, super important."

In her clip Jess, a former model and producer of the body image documentary Straight/Curve, says that these days, she's modeling "the life of a working mom." With her 9-month-old baby on her hip, she encourages all moms to know they deserve to live their dreams. "You are a superwoman," she says. "Get it, lady."

Julie Wilson, the fashion and beauty director at Essence magazine, says she models diversity: "Because black is beautiful."

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