Jessica Simpson on the scrutiny over her body: ‘it just doesn’t need to be a conversation’

Jessica Simpson has been raising her profile lately. Her youngest child is now four, so she has more time to devote to work. Right now that includes her fashion line, a docuseries, and a return to music. Whatever Jessica does, though, the coverage of her always seems to include a review of her weight, both current and past. From denying she’s on Ozempic, to inadvertently having a 2010 magazine cover make headlines again, the conversation keeps circling back to her body. In an interview with Access Hollywood last Friday, Jessica lamented that the attention on her weight has never relented, but went on to describe how she puts a positive spin on it with her kids. Page Six covered the interview:

Jessica Simpson is tired of the public conversation surrounding her weight.

“We need to focus on our mentality about even talking about weight,” Simpson told Access Hollywood during an interview Friday.

“I think it just doesn’t need to be a conversation.”

The “Take My Breath Away” singer, 43, empathized with other women who face scrutiny for their weight because she has “been every size.”

However, the criticism over Simpson’s physique hasn’t wavered during her life in the spotlight.

“I wish I could explain it. I wish I could say for me that it’s gotten better, but it still remains the same,” she added.

Simpson — who shares daughters Maxwell, 11, and Birdie, 4, and son Ace, 10, with husband Eric Johnson — said that the ongoing scrutiny of her body has been “very confusing” for her children, who “don’t understand” why the public eye has been so harsh about their mom’s appearance.

“I tell my kids, ‘How you feel about yourself is how you should feel,’” she explained. “It’s not about… You don’t dress for anybody else. You don’t try to look like anybody else.”

Simpson is one of many stars to face accusations that she has used the Type 2 diabetes drug Ozempic to shed pounds.

However, the “Dukes of Hazzard” star shut down those claims earlier this month.

“Do people want me to be drinking again?” she asked in an interview with Bustle Magazine. “Because that’s when I was heavier. Or they want me to be having another baby? My body can’t do it.”

Simpson did, however, attribute her weight loss to “willpower,” noting that while the unfortunate comments on her body “hurt,” she doesn’t let the “negativity derail” her.

“No, I’m too old for that,” she added. “I am too connected to myself right now.”

[From Page Six]

Jessica is right that we need to re-evaluate our cultural obsession with body size and the way we think and talk about it. I’ve struggled with my weight most of my life. Sometimes I catch myself having a very unkind thought about my body and I think “Good grief, Kismet, where did that come from?” It was learned somewhere along the way, I just can’t believe we’re born with those negative thoughts. Jessica is also right that there’s absolutely no need for a continuing public discourse on her body. Have I noticed the various iterations of her size and appearance? Yes I have. I’ve also noticed that in myself, and pretty much everyone in my life. It’s not the first thing that comes to mind when I think of Jessica Simpson, as I hope it’s not the first thing other people think of about me. So can we please retire the conversation about Jessica Simpson’s size, and bring back the one about her “chicken or fish” tuna flub? I’m feeling nostalgic.

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Photos credit LAGossipTV/Backgrid and via Instagram

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25 Responses to “Jessica Simpson on the scrutiny over her body: ‘it just doesn’t need to be a conversation’”

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  1. ⁷Tree says:

    Her father started that conversation. He literally used her body to start conversations. They would add talking points into her interviews. So in this instance I can’t be mad at the press. Her people constantly brought it up so the press started to automatically add it.

    I want to add her father really set her up in life despite his flaws and alleged ruining relationships. That clothing line was so well planned. Anytime they had a problem they pivoted so well.

    • girl_ninja says:

      Really? Her father was her manager and she was a kid when she started out. She is no longer under his management and hasn’t been for some time now. She has been a successful business woman raising her children with her husband AND a woman working on her sobriety.

    • Moxylady says:

      When I think of Jessica Simpson I think of shoes. Shoes that are cute, comfortable – for the most part – and affordable.

      I have never gotten a wicked blister or painfully digging in / rubbing hell
      mid evening, date night, museum tour or event in a pair of her shoes.

      They range from wild to straight up bedroom shoes to classic excellent work or event shoes.

      • Turtledove says:

        Moxylady, I should try her shoes again. I see cute ones for great prices at places like TJMaxx a lot. I bought a pair a really long time ago, and they killed my feet and I never bought another since. But those were in the early days, maybe they have improved.

    • emberle says:

      @⁷Tree, You’re 100% correct, about her father, prompting these conversations.
      How could anyone forget his creepy and questionable comments. Ick.
      In 2004, he said
      “Jessica never tries to be sexy. … She just is sexy. If you put her in a T-shirt or you put
      her in a bustier, she’s sexy in both. She’s got double D’s! You can’t cover those suckers up!”
      Again in 2006
      “Look, this is a girl who’s had this problem since 7th grade. We’ve always had to deal with it. She’s sexy in this, she’s sexy in that. I can’t hide the fact that Jessica has boobs.”

      • TheVolvesSeidr says:

        @emberle, that’s the way I remember it too. Her dad is a POS imo. He effed Jessica up. Addiction is caused by self medicating trauma. HE is her childhood trauma.

      • Kitten says:

        Ugh yes those comments were SO gross and Trump-y!

  2. girl_ninja says:

    She’s absolutely right about not needing to have this conversation. It’s all faux concern anyway and just a way to be critical and pick apart these women in the spotlight.

    • ama1977 says:

      Agree, 1000%. I have a daughter about the same age as her oldest, and I have been really conscious about how I talk about myself and other people, and also the words used around food, for several years now. And even so, she absorbs the negativity from the world around her and we talk about it and I try to deconstruct it. I cannot IMAGINE if she was hearing those things said about me, her mom, by other people or the media!! How harmful and wrong.

      I have a soft spot for her. She seems like a genuinely kind, sweet person who had parents who pushed her towards fame, and she came into prominence during the completely toxic early 2000’s when the world seemed to chew young female stars up for sport. I’m glad she made it through and wish her and her family happiness.

    • Kitten says:

      Agreed. Mindy Kalig said something similar recently and yeah. I don’t blame these women for just shutting that shit down. Must be so freaking exhausting.

    • AmyB says:


      Faux concern – you are exactly correct!! It’s not like any of these people are personally invested in Jessica’s life; they simply use that to criticize her and tear her down. I can’t imagine dealing with that toxicity.

  3. Blithe says:

    Hmmm. On the one hand: Yeah, she’s right. On the other, she has benefited from and deliberately used her physical appearance — her white, blonde, conventionally-attractive-by-Eurocentric-standards body — to build her career. It would be nice if she’d acknowledge that. I’m guessing that she would be fine with the attention if it were uniformly positive.

  4. Unfortunately she accepted payment from WW to talk about her weight in commercials, interviews, social media, etc. Her weight was her main talking point during that time. It’s become part of her image and personality by her choice.

    • Josephine says:

      She did make her weight into her main talking point and into a business for awhile. She’s also built a ton of her career on what she looks like and what she’s wearing. When you profit from your looks it unfortunately sets you down a path of your looks being central to your public persona. I do think she has the ability to create a new talking point for herself but she just has not done so yet. It would be nice to see her evolve.

    • Mrs.Krabapple says:

      THIS! She took money to shill for Weight Watchers, so she should shut up now when people want to discuss her weight. Same goes for Kirsty Alley, Valerie Bertinelli, etc.

    • AmyB says:

      Yes, but she is not a spokesperson for WW anymore! As we have looked back on the horrible comments she got years ago when she wore the “mom jeans” and was labeled fat in the media (when she was the farthest thing from it), Jessica has a good point. Nothing constructive or positive comes from this cultural obsession we have with discussing a woman’s body/weight or speculating about eating disorders, etc. It is all toxic. I have scrolled through Jessica’s Instagram a few times, and it is utterly disgusting with the comments.

  5. Moxylady says:

    I swear to god, I should be in PR. This is getting ridiculous. How does no one see these super obvious ways of genuinely connecting with the public and using their brands at the same time.

  6. Caroline says:

    I have a medical condition where my weight fluctuates pretty regularly and visibly and I completely agree that you actually should never comment on someone else’s weight changes, unless they asked you.

    The absolute worse is when people praise me for losing weight when I know that, for me, the weight loss is a manifestation of being unwell and that it is temporary. All it does is make me wonder what they’re really thinking about me when I’m bigger.

    • HollyGolightly says:

      I’ve been struggling with major anxiety and stress lately. I’m 5’0, and a few pounds show either way. I probably HAVE lost under 5lbs (I never weigh myself) and people have commented on it.

      Few things annoy me as much as hearing, “You look great! You lost weight!”

      I wasn’t trying to, and I was already a size 2, but thanks for letting me know that you used to think I needed to.

      I also lost weight after I lost my taste for a month after I had Covid last year. Once again got compliments.

  7. Well Wisher says:

    The part that got me, ‘the unkind thoughts of my body’……….
    So true….

  8. Somebody Nobody says:

    It wasn’t that long ago when she posted about her 100lb weight loss and how she thought she’d never wear a bikini again. She’s part of the conversation.

  9. Kate says:

    Ok but can we talk about that chunky metal and turquoise low-waist belt? That fashion needs to stay in 2005

  10. Jess says:

    She literally became famous for having a hot bod, not because of her amazing voice or artistic abilities. She has made herself so rich by taking about her body and the weight watchers deals and all of that. If it wasn’t for her body, she wouldn’t have the money and fame. It sucks she feels that way but did she think she was famous form her talents or brains? She seems nice and I liked her book but she isn’t exactly a barrier breaking artist or have much to offer than her looks, her struggles and her “good country gal” stick. She has hundreds of millions of dollars, maybe just be ok with winning capitalism and not try to be a victim of a game she willingly participated in and won?

  11. So says:

    Holly shit that’s her 11 years old daughter on the right of the picture (in the jean skirt) ???
    For someone whose body was exploited as a young age, she should be more aware of some things. 11 is way too young for that kind of styling…

    • Mrs. S says:

      I am not a pearl clutcher, but this made me grasp for some. That child is too young to look like that. My granddaughter is a year younger but looks at least 7 years younger than Maxwell. Not my child. Not my business, but it sure made my eyes pop out of my head.