Fashion-focused evenings can be murky waters to tread. We balance on the fine line of appreciating a well-put-together look, without over analyzing the body/choices of the individual under the dress or suit.
Last night was an important night in the fashion world, with looks from the Met Gala blowing up on social media.
We love seeing the quirky and thematic looks that celebs and designers put together for the annual event. However, fans’ analysis of looks at the Met Gala saw the re-appearance of one of the most groan-inducing phrases in my opinion: the “revenge body”.
At this particular event, people were whipping up some theories about Bella Hadid‘s look, saying that she was sporting a “revenge body.”
Bella took the red carpet by storm in sexy bedazzled jumpsuit that was truly just unreal. Also at the event was The Weeknd (Bella’s ex) with new GF Selena Gomez, which is where the whole “revenge” part comes into play.
Before I continue, let me just make a quick clarification. Just to be clear a “revenge body” is one meant to make others jealous, particularly an ex-partner. Urban Dictionary explains it as when “you work your ass off to look the best you can just to piss him/her off and make them regret their poor choices.”
Let’s dive into why this terminology is super dangerous.
From a physical and mental health perspective, using revenge to drive yourself to acquire a certain look or level of fitness is ineffective and has potentially toxic consequences. Celebrity trainer Anna Kaiser explains,
“I want the workout to be a positive experience, not a vulnerable situation tied to someone who has wronged you. The idea of revenge itself is not healthy. Feeling comfortable to move on and be a stronger person is much healthier than an idea like that.”
This kind of vengeful attitude promotes an unhealthy view of weight loss/healthy lifestyle. Your body deserves care and attention in whatever form you choose, regardless of your relationship status.
Additionally, this kind of speculation of someone’s look/weight loss has other potentially negative consequences. Unless they tell you directly, you don’t know how or why someone lost weight or otherwise changed their look, and it’s dangerous to make assumptions about intention. You don’t know struggles people have been through, so it’s best to not jump to conclusions.
The term draws additional conclusions about people’s intentions. It assumes people are vengeful in nature. It pits people against each other. Why must someone only dress well and look good for the sake of pissing someone else off?
I mean, the whole idea of looking extra good when you might run into an ex is not new. But this rhetoric of “revenge body” is new, and slowly creeping its way into how we talk about health and relationships. Can we pump the brakes on this one?
Allie Bush is a Contributing Writer at Femestella. She is interested in creating and sharing entertaining and engaging content, in whatever form it may take. She is a proud TV junkie and in her spare time can be found watching late night talk shows, talking about Chrissy Teigen or Amy Poehler, or eating off of other people’s plates.