Addison Rae is still figuring out how to navigate her career on social media. But one aspect of her life in which she currently feels most secure is with body image.
"I feel really comfortable with myself and my body now, but that’s obviously something I’ve had to work on and learn how to do," she told Elle UK. "Because it’s really hard to love the things about yourself that maybe people don’t want you to love."
With over 128 million collective followers on TikTok and Instagram, the journey of learning to love herself becomes even more difficult. The 21-year-old recalled first getting on Instagram when she was 11, and since gaining a massive following and fame, her online presence has come with a lot of pressure.
"No matter who you are or what you do, there’s going to be negativity. Social media can be toxic, and dealing with it is definitely an uphill battle," she said. "The comments can be so cruel, and it really throws me off that people even feel the need to say the things they do. I think if everyone just learnt to love themselves, they’d have less to say about other people."
Rae has previously spoken about the toll on her mental health that social media has taken, telling Glamour UK that a majority of the negativity that she faces online is related to her body. "My body is constantly changing, but people have this high standard around body image and say, ‘Oh, you have to look like this to look great or to look hot or to be cool or to be pretty,'" she explained. "For me, a lot of people have said, ‘Oh I love how comfortable she is and she doesn't look like the beauty standard.’ It's a backhanded compliment sometimes because people will be like, ‘I'm so glad she's confident that she doesn't look perfect.'"
One of the ways that Rae's found most confidence is through the evolution of her style. "Learning how to style my body type and understanding what looks good and feels good on me has been a big thing," she said. "Every body is so different, so something that looks great on someone else might not look the same on me. And that’s fine. It’s about finding things you love, but in a way that makes you feel the most confident — and making it your own."
She continued, "I love a sheer mesh, and fishnets layered under a dress. It feels sexy without being too much. I’m also wearing a lot of tighter-fitting clothes at the moment as I feel like they hold me in and make me feel secure. And I’m obsessed with slip dresses: they’re so timeless and classy."
The Louisiana native pointed to Angelina Jolie and Kate Moss as two of her inspirations for fashion. And although they admittedly don't all share the same body type, she's influenced by their presence as a whole.
"Sexiness comes from within," she stated as one of the biggest lessons she's learned. "It’s something you project, like an aura — in your personality, in the way you speak or carry yourself."
As for the naysayers that she'll continue to face, Rae is set on paying them no mind.
"Everything I’ve done so far in my career is because of choices I’ve made, and straying true to myself and my intuition. So why would I listen to what anyone else has to say?" she said. "I got here all on my own."
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