Welcome Back to Diving In, a new series where we sit down and discuss body confidence with inspiring women. In this piece, we sit down with American Model, Alex Underwood. Underwood is not just beautiful but passionate too. She is the founder of The Unwanteds Project, a horse rescue that brings awareness to the abuse that these beautiful animals face. Alex stars in Coco Reef’s newest campaign, Flaunt Your Shape. The campaign focuses on embracing the body positivity movement and encouraging women to show off their bodies. The goal is to show women that being who they are is not only good enough, it’s perfect.
How did you become body positive? What was the journey to accepting and loving your body like?
“I had a really big moment happen in the eighth grade. I’d always had problems making friends with girls growing up and I had recently been invited to hang out with a special group of girls. While hanging out with them, I realized they talked so badly about themselves. I remember listening and thinking, they sound silly! I don’t see any of this. And I didn’t want to sound that way. I guess I made a pact with myself that day – to accept and love myself.”
What advice would you give your younger self?
Stop skipping class! And don’t sweat the small things.
What is your life motto?
‘Never forget that the pressures of modern life are only a man-made game. You can take a break whenever you wish. It isn’t necessary to stress yourself to the level of those around you. Take nothing as seriously as your universal right to seek peace’
What advice would you give for someone struggling with confidence and body acceptance?
If you’re finding it hard to move past a body issue or hard to gain momentum to your body loving goal… try eliminating the outside influences. For instance: I gave up Facebook five years ago and monthly magazines. I immediately felt relieved. They say you are what you eat but to broaden that- you are what you consume. Give yourself substance in all areas of life. Your self love journey is yours and yours alone.
How do you ‘Flaunt Your Shape?
‘For me, comfort is everything and comfort equals confidence. Especially when you’re down to your skivvies! I actually prefer to find a nude beach, honestly. When I do find a swimsuit that fits me so well it feels like I’m wearing nothing- that’s a keeper!