Shapewear Ambassador 2021 Larissa Downey for FIGUR by Jules

Age: 30 | Size: 12-14

I love how you are all about embracing the body you are born with or for some of us the body that has grown with life changes. I love the empowerment that your brand provides to women.

My own story is a long one, but I have always battled with self image/body image with a lot of bullying growing up and then a mismatch of societal pressure in the entertainment industry to be a certain size/look a certain way, which I just couldn't match.

I have always been curvy to a degree, well have been told that I'm bigger, or if I just lost a bit how successful I would be. But I wish now, looking back at my 20 year old self I could tell her to love your body just the way it is and not to listen to those people. It didn't stop me doing the things I loved like acting and modelling but I did feel like I was ticking the plus size box a lot of the time, those in charge would say we are using a plus size (referring to me) and yet I was a size 10!

I'm 30 this year and have a beautiful 2 year old son. I'm proud of my body for what it has achieved and how incredible it has been nurturing my baby, but I am still constantly battling a negative body image of myself. It's one of those things that has just been engrained in me and it's an awful way to feel about yourself - that you're not beautiful enough because your tummy is two sizes bigger than it use to be after having a child.

I struggled with postnatal depression and I really gained a lot of weight. I have come to realise now that health is far more important than my size and I am working every day to find the beauty in me again.

I would love to feel confident and beautiful in my body every day and I love that this is what you are helping with. I also want to be a part of changing society's perception on what is beautiful as we all have something special to give and size/looks/race shouldn't be a deciding factor on that.

July 26, 2023 — Balbir Kumar