Lili Reinhart kept checking herself in the mirror all day & obsessing over small changes

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You would think a beautiful woman like Lili Reinhart, who’s starring on a successful show like Riverdale, would have very few worries. Especially when you see her looking perfectly styled in that black Markarian gown above. But, as the saying goes, you never know what battles someone else is fighting. Except in Lili’s case, we do – because she’s generous enough to share it with us. Lili has spoken up about her struggles with cystic acne and being trolled on the internet about her weight. Last Sunday, at Glamour’s Women of the Year Summit, Lili spoke of struggling with her weight this last year and the toll it, and people commenting on it, has taken on her.

On being criticized for speaking about her weight: For the past year… I’ve been quietly trying to navigate my fluctuating weight and I’ve faced criticism in the past for talking about my body image. People told me that I didn’t have the right to talk about being self-conscious about my body because I was skinny. And I understand how it seems inappropriate for someone who is average size to talk about problems with weight gain.

On the industry affecting her body issues: I didn’t think anything was wrong with my body until I was in an industry that rewards and praises people for having a smaller waist than I will ever have. I became hyper-aware of my changing body. I could see the difference in my shape in photos and wondered if anyone else was noticing. I felt this strange, constant struggle of having to live up to the expectation of the appearance that I had already established to the world.

On checking the mirror constantly: So I found myself examining my body constantly in the mirror. Sometimes thinking…’Okay, like, I was being too hard on myself. Everything’s fine. I’m still the same size. Everything is fine.’ Only go back to the mirror a few hours later… and notice that my stomach looked completely different. So I was thinking, was my reflection lying to me? How can my body look so different over the course of one day and why do I feel like I need to apologize to the world for my ever-changing self? I didn’t want the world to think I was catfishing them with my appearance or making myself out to be a certain size and shape when clearly my body was changing.

On how she deals with it now: I don’t have the perfect solution. But I have discovered some things that help me have those better days. I started to purge myself of content that made me feel less beautiful on a daily basis. I unfollowed the accounts on Instagram that made me question the shape and curves of my own body. I also started living a more active lifestyle because I wanted to feel healthy on the inside, which required some thoughtful effort on my part. But I wanted to know that I was healthy and strong without having identical measurements to those other women that I’m seeing.

[From People]

I understand that Lili is trying to be sympathetic when she said she understood why people don’t think it’s appropriate for her to discuss her weight, but I disagree with those getting angry. I don’t think she should be silenced because she has a smaller frame. The issue is not her actual weight, it’s her struggles with her self-image. Lili has already admitted to a form of body dysmorphia, the last thing she needs is to be policed on how she deals with it.

I’m glad she’s found something that helps her side-step her own scrutiny. I don’t know how she can avoid those images given her profession but if it’s working, great. I try to adopt an active lifestyle as well so I can remind myself that at least I’m trying to do something about how I look. But I don’t have the perfect solution either. I went jean shopping last Sunday and started crying in a dressing room. I was so embarrassed about what I saw in the mirror, I was afraid to come out. So it breaks my heart to hear that someone like Lili is checking the mirror several times a day over insecurity. But I am grateful that she elects to speak up on it because it helps to know that damn mirror attacks us all.

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Photo credit: Avalon

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13 Responses to “Lili Reinhart kept checking herself in the mirror all day & obsessing over small changes”

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  1. Lucy says:

    The more I learn about Lili, the more I like her. Same goes for the rest of the Riverdale ladies. I’m so here for this generation of female starlets talking about real, deep stuff, whether that’s body image, mental health, gender issues, race and/or politics.

  2. Kate says:

    I saw a tweet posted on Instagram yesterday that said “I’m so pissed I spent my skinny years thinking I was fat” – and it was funny and also sooooo true. I wish more young women would be able to find perspective like that while they are young.

  3. Ginger says:

    I too have a body type that is basically thin, but my stomach is noticeably larger by evening. It sucks. You feel like a boa constrictor that’s digesting an ostrich egg. You feel insecure in anything form fitting because your tummy sticks out. You spend an inordinate amount of time searching the internet for tummy control underwear. You try all different types of eating and every ab workout you can find. You avoid eating anything substantial during the day when you have a formal event that night because you’re afraid that your outfit won’t look good or that you’ll look like you’re early on in a pregnancy. Yes, there are worse things, but it can make you feel bad about yourself. I can’t imagine what it must be like to deal with it while in the public eye.

    • I'm With The Band says:

      THIS. I bloat so easily and my mid-section is most definitely my trouble area. It blows because the rest of me is quite slim. Makes wearing certain clothes really difficult and I always have to cover my waistline with high pants or a shirt to avoid looking like a complete slob.

  4. Esmom says:

    I feel for her being in that industry. I don’t know that it will change for er given her profession but the older I have gotten the less I obsess about my appearance. I still care about it but I don’t obsess over, say a single blemish that in the past would seem life-ruining, to nearly the same extent.

    I guess I’m lucky to have people surrounding me that don’t care, either. In college I had a boyfriend who would constantly scrutinize my body and comment about any weight I might gained, real or perceived. Meanwhile he was gaining way more than me, thanks to his drinking habits, without much of a care. Grr.

  5. huckle says:

    She looks like Brittany Murphy to me. Love her outfits.

  6. plaidsheets says:

    I am going to share this with my daughter. She is a huge Riverdale fan. I think she’s still a bit too young for it, so we watch it together and discuss. However, my daughter struggles with body image issues (already!) of not being thin enough, etc. It would help to see her favorite character speak on this issues as well. Mom can only say so much before she is tuned out.

  7. AJ says:

    It’s not the mirror. It’s the patriarchal framework that establishes “You’re so pretty” as the first and most important thing someone says to a young girl. It trains us to see our desirability as our best currency, and keeps us first distracted by appearances and shallow obsessiveness, then keeps us again out of spheres of power or influence once we are older, by the messaging that as “not pretty” we are no longer relevant, have nothing to offer, and should be invisible and ignored. You add that your actual livelihood is counting on it, revolves around it and supports that line? That’s a hotter hell.

  8. Abby says:

    Love what she says about body positivity but would also love her to truly address the hypocrisy of it going on in her show. All the actors/actresses who a part of the main cast are skinny and fit. Not long ago 2 of her male cast mates were still body shamming people in real life and through their social media. She should’ve also acknowledged that it’s mainly because she fits into her industry’s standards that she gets to appear on so many magazine covers in the first place or gets to talk about such a topic with everyone praising her for it. Or to address the fact that if this same speech was given by someone considered “too fat” by her industry, that person wouldn’t praised for it and would be told by everyone how unhealthy he/she is.

  9. Case says:

    A well-spoken, intelligent, talented, beautiful young woman. I really like her. She feels real, and that makes her such a good role model for young girls.

  10. Meg says:

    when I look back at old pictures of myself and I want to scream that I didn’t know or appreciate how nice I looked and why didn’t I ‘know’ and feel good as a result? it really doesn’t matter how you literally look, it’s how you feel. that’s the goal for me anyway when I see an old picture of myself or see another woman who looks like I wish I did-not how she looks but that she seems to enjoy and have confidence in her looks. i approached a friend once about this who i thought looked amazing and she said no, she didn’t have confidence and feared she looked bad

  11. Meg says:

    I’ve cried in clothing changing rooms at target, in the gym on a machine-I’ve gotten pretty good at crying without making a sound or even people seeing. part of being a woman in a sexist world