Black women’s bodies have always been associated with curvy and full figures. It’s something, as Black women, we learn at a very early age. Whether we fit the “ideal” body mold or not, the way our bodies are shaped has been conversation-starters since Sarah Baartman. And today is no different, especially when you log on to Twitter and see BBLs trending.
Last night, Twitter user @MuvaofGotti tweeted a video of his or her flight back to Atlanta from the Dominican Republic that showed over two dozen women being transported via wheelchairs. The clip has over 1 million views and even more opinions.
As a young girl, I was ridiculed for being a Black girl who was tall and slim with “no shape,” so I understand what it is like to have a less desirable body in your own culture. That might make me be biased in my standpoint on plastic surgery, but I think if a Black woman wants to get her body done- that’s well within her right.
Body shaming is a common occurrence on social media we are all guilty of. Pop star Lizzo constantly defends herself against trolls who are offended by her plus-size body. Coi Leray was shamed for her small assets. “Get used to this lil ass cause I ain’t never gonna stop shaking it,” she clapped back.
Social media and reality TV have played significant roles in the rise of plastic surgery culture. Between the two, we’ve watching public figures like the Kardashians, turn their enhanced bodies into billion dollar brands. They’ve influenced a league of women who continue to capitalize off looking like Black women with exotic features while being praised for their natural beauty. But if we’re being honest, that’s only a branch on the beauty tree — the roots are much deeper. The beauty standards by which Black women are held are simply unfair. Thus, here we are with the Internet declaring BBLs an epidemic in the Black community. We’re damned if we do, damned if we don’t.
With curvier shapes glamorized in the entertainment industry and by men, in general, Black women are being chastised for trying to live up to society’s standards. But are other races getting criticized for getting nose jobs or breast implants; or the BBLs they’ve gotten to then go on to build lucrative fitness brands?
How can we diminish the women who’ve undergone cosmetic procedures to better fit into their clothes because dress shapes are also created by particular body molds?
Not all of #BlackTwitter was here for the virtual bashing. Other Black women came to the aid of their sisters.
Obviously the dangerous aspect of BBLs and plastic surgery are a concern. Popular plastic surgeon and star of Botched, Dr. Terry Dubrow called the operation “fatal.” “It turns out that it’s the most dangerous, not only plastic surgery procedure, its the most dangerous operation there is with the highest fatality rate,” he said during a TMZ Live broadcast.
We encourage all women who are considering plastic surgery to do it responsibly. But we can’t talk about concern without addressing the cause of the rise in popularity of BBLs. And the common denominator is always men. So dear men, please stay out of Black women’s business. Please and thank you.