Jessica Blair of @lovejessicablair is a leader in the movement to redefine beauty standards. She’s here to talk about building confidence and practicing self-love. Her 68,000 Instagram followers, us included, are inspired by her confidence, honesty, and vulnerability.
Jessica practices self-love by taking care of her body and health and not worrying about losing weight or counting calories. Her message is one of self love and celebration and that no magazine or piece of media gets to decide how beautiful we are.
What does self-love mean to you? How do you practice it?
To me, self-love means showing yourself the patience and kindness and understanding you afford to others. Not only appreciating your body but also yourself and everything you’ve done and are capable of doing. Self-love doesn’t necessarily have to manifest as never-ending love and happiness towards yourself and your body, but rather just being nicer to yourself whenever you aren’t feeling or doing the best. I honestly just try to practice self-love in tiny ways. For instance, trying to give myself a break whenever I feel overwhelmed emotionally and not beating myself up for what I'm feeling. A big way I’ve been continuously learning to show myself love is by eating whatever food I want. So often, especially when you’re not thin, there’s this pressure that you shouldn’t eat “too much” or that you always need to eat healthy. Food is something I’ve struggled with my entire life, but I feel like I’m just now learning not to deprive myself and to just let myself truly enjoy whatever I want.
Comment on this phrase: “our flaws make us beautiful”
Flaws don’t really exist, they’re just an idea created by [culture and media]. People are constantly inundated with beauty and skincare products or diet fads, therefore “flaws” have to be created so these “cures” can be packaged and sold to us. Fatphobia also perpetuates the idea that bodily “flaws” exist, as anybody above a sample size are often seen as inherently unattractive or unworthy of respect. The idea of “flaws” is absolute bullshit and everybody is beautiful because of, not in spite of, their unique features and personalities and ideas.
What’s something that you think is beautiful about yourself?
I could go the easy route and talk about my eyes or my legs or something, but I really love my ability to understand and empathize with others. It might just be my cancer sun talking, but I’m usually the mom friend so I just find it really beautiful that my friends are able to trust and love me on the level that they do. Also, I've kinda learned to really love my butt. So that too.