As she continues to receive critical acclaim on both sides of the Atlantic for her debut album I Stand Alone, young country singer-songwriter Sasha McVeigh has spoken out about body image confidence and the importance of being yourself.
Earlier today (July 20), she took to her Facebook to writea lengthy
post which set the record straight on some misconceptions, preconceptions and ideas some people had, and continue to have, about her.
I receive a lot of messages daily from all of you wonderful people. Sometimes you talk about me, sometimes about my music and sometimes you tell me about you. I love hearing ANYTHING and EVERYTHING you have to say. But sometimes I get messages from you telling me how perfect you think I am. How you wish your "skin looked as smooth as mine", you wish you were as "pretty as I am" or you wished your "body looked like mine". These kinds of messages always make me feel really sad because I can remember looking up to certain artists when I was younger, and even now, and comparing myself to them, and wishing I looked like them. I NEVER wanted that to be the case with me. I never want to make anyone feel inadequate with themselves. And I know it's easier said than done because people, especially girls/women, always compare themselves to others. For some reason it's how we're wired. But the fact is, nobody is perfect, our imperfections are what make us unique and beautiful. Some of us have the same imperfections because heck we're human and hormones do what hormones do, that's part of life too. So, today, I'm going to address things about my appearance that have been mentioned in messages, tweets etc and I'm going to be completely honest with you. I'm a little nervous and a little scared but if I can help just one person by doing this, then it's worth it! Here goes...
I don't have clear skin. I've had acne since I was 10 years-old and it got worse when I hit puberty. Look in my bathroom cabinet and you'll see I've tried every anti-acne cream, medicine, remedy in the book. Over the years I've just gotten REALLY good with make-up and I often take pictures on the side where I have the least spots on that particular day.
- I don't have smooth skin. In some areas my face looks like the surface of the moon - ha ha - but again, primer is a God-send and so is moisturiser.
- I don't have rock-hard abs or a flat stomach. When I was 16 I envied all those Disney Channel starlets who were my age and somehow had these washboard stomachs. I must have done thousands of crunches and eaten some horrible shakes to get there but it never happened because the fact is my genetics aren't on my side. Plus, I love junk food and loathe the gym soooo the shakes and the crunches didn't last long with me!!
- I currently weigh 10st (140lbs) so I am most definitely not super skinny. This is however heavier than I usually am and I've been about 8lbs overweight for the last 6 months. I'm not really happy about it but I'm also not going to give up my nachos, lemon meringue pie and donuts.
- I'm 21 years-old and I have cellulite. Yes, you heard me...CELLULITE! It's on my thighs and my butt and made itself known about 6 months ago. At first I thought the world was ending and the apocalypse was looming but the fact is, most women get cellulite. There's no rhyme or reason to it. Maybe mine will disappear if I can get myself to the gym enough times, but if not, I'm just learning to live with it.
I have stretch marks on my butt and hips. They showed up when I hit puberty and I developed a "woman's body", as my Mum called it. Most people get them!
I DO NOT HAVE A THIGH GAP!! I don't really understand where this obsession came from but I most definitely do not have one, nor have I ever as far as I know.
Some of those things above are things that really bothered me when I was younger and honestly sometimes still do now. I'll look in the mirror and see my cellulite and it'll make me not want to put on a pair of shorts or I won't want to go out without covering my acne. But a lot of the time I'll think to myself...WHO THE HELL CARES!! Because like I said, I've learnt we all have imperfections. We all have things we're not happy about. Most women have cellulite and stretch marks because we're human and that's how our skin and bodies work. Everybody's different and nobody is perfect.
In school I got bullied. I was told a lot that I had a big nose and my butt stuck out. For the longest time I thought I should have a smaller nose and I should wear clothes to hide my butt. But, both of those things are part of what make me, me. I was born with this nose and it's part of my face. I was born with this butt and as it turns out, nowadays women want them to be as big as they can get them - how ironic!!
People will often try to bring you down, usually to try to hide their own insecurities. Magazines will always print articles about diets or people who are too fat or too thin because they know us women will eat that stuff up and believe it. But why should we let them make us feel inadequate?
If you have cellulite on your legs and you want to wear shorts, wear shorts! If you don't have washboard abs but you want to wear a crop top, wear a crop top. Boys, if you wanna go shirtless, go shirtless. If you feel insecure and want to cover up, cover up. Do what you want to do. Do what makes you happy. Do what makes you feel beautiful. But never compare yourself to the person next to you because that person will have just a many worries as you do. Someone once told me to think of the person I most wanted to be like. So I did. Then they said, "Now tell me what you don't like about them!". And I said nothing. Then they said, "Well, can they sing?". And I said, no they couldn't. Therefore would I have wanted to trade my body for theirs but not been able to do one of the biggest things that makes me who I am. NO WAY NO HOW!!
We're all unique. We're all beautiful. I know it's easy to forget that and sometimes it's hard to see. The last thing I'd want is for anyone to get down on themselves because they wish they looked "as perfect as me" because there's no such thing as perfection. It doesn't exist. There is no ideal. You're just you and I'm just me and I think we're pretty awesome the way we are!
She finished by writing:
Never let anyone dull your sunshine. I love you!
In a society almost completely obsessed by body image, celebrities and the ideas (most often negative) that come with wanting to "look perfect", Sasha is being praised and applauded for her openness- and rightly so.
She is a refreshing breath of fresh air in such an image-obsessed world and as someone who, despite her so-called 'flaws', is happy to be herself, she is determined to help others feel comfortable within themselves, as well.
As she writes in her post, she loves to hear from her fans and supporters, so get in touch with her using the following social media links: click forFacebook, and to follow Sasha on Twitter or her Instagram.
We here at PopWrapped think Sasha is a great role model and cannot praise her enough for her honesty and openness as she continues to encourage others to believe in and feel better about themselves.