Wanderlust isn’t limited to slim, white women — but they’re often the only people we see represented in travel content. That’s what makes #FatGirlsTraveling so empowering.
Annette Richmond created the hashtag to give plus-size women a sorely-needed spotlight in the travel space, to celebrate the selfies they’re taught they should be too ashamed to take and to reclaim the word “fat.” It’s since evolved into an Instagram account that features user-submitted photos from a refreshingly diverse audience of “fat girls.”
“I rarely see girls like me — fat girls — featured on [major travel profiles]. But when I travel I see fat girls travelling,” Richmond told Mic. “I’m out here travelling and I’m seeing the world — I know we’re out here. But I feel like these bigger profiles or companies don’t feature curvy or fat girls.”
Since launching the account in January, @fatgirlstraveling has garnered more than 1,000 followers. They’re also getting dozens of messages of gratitude, with followers saying that the photos are helping with their confidence and taking the pressure off getting their bodies “vacation ready.”
Richmond has also launched a Facebook group of the same name, where members can swap travel stories and offer support and encouragement in equal measure.
“So many of these women go on these beautiful vacations and all they’ll take is these landscape photos because they don’t feel confident enough to get in front of the camera,” Richmond continues. “I feel like once we have more representation and more women that look like us getting in front of the camera and getting attention for that, then more people will feel comfortable doing it.”
“Everyone has their own goals, but we have to love ourselves the way we are now. We have to love women the way they are now and encourage them to love themselves no matter what their weight.”
A vacation (and your body on that vacation) is a beautiful thing!