Lizzo is many things — a singer, rapper, songwriter, dancer, and classically trained flutist — but it’s often her body that dominates the conversation over her music. In an industry that perpetuates a singular standard of beauty, the multi-hyphenate star is shaking up the status quo and encouraging her fans to free themselves of confidence-stealing stereotypes.
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In a new interview with People, for the “Women Changing the World” issue, Lizzo spoke to the stereotypes women like her face: “The funny, fat friend. I played that trope in high school. Or the friend who is gonna beat your ass ’cause she’s big. Or it’s the big girl who’s insecure ’cause she’s big.” she said. “I don’t think I’m the only kind of fat girl there is. I want us to be freed from that box we’ve been put in.”
And the “Truth Hurts” singer is working to do just that. “I had to blaze a trail,” Lizzo said. “There was no Lizzo before Lizzo.” She continued, “I deserve the spotlight. I deserve the attention. I’m talented, I’m young, I’m hot. You know? And I’ve worked hard.” She has the accolades to prove it, too, including three Grammy Awards and a number of chart-topping hits.
Now, Lizzo is ready for the conversations around her body to stop so that she can be appreciated solely for her talent. “Okay, we all know I’m fat,” she told People. “I know I’m fat. It doesn’t bother me. I like being fat, and I’m beautiful and I’m healthy. So can we move on?”
But the 33-year-old musician made it clear that she isn’t done being a champion of body positivity. In fact, she considers herself a modern-day “body icon,” and she hopes others like her are empowered by that. “I think I have a really hot body! I’m a body icon, and I’m embracing that more and more every day,” she told the publication.
“It may not be one person’s ideal body type just like, say, Kim Kardashian might not be someone’s ideal, but she’s a body icon and has created a modern-day beauty standard,” she added. “And what I’m doing is stepping into my confidence and my power to create my own beauty standard. And one day that will just be the standard.”
Whether she is posting a nude photo on social media, confidently sporting a string bikini or twerking on stage in a leotard, Lizzo is refusing to make herself smaller, literally and figuratively, for a society that demands it — and it’s incredibly inspiring to see. She is also committed to bringing others like her into the spotlight. Her upcoming Amazon Prime Video reality show, Lizzo’s Watch Out for the Big Grrrls, will feature full-size women competing to be her backup dancers.
On her fame, Lizzo told People: “I was like, ‘OK, what can I do with this? How can I make the best of this? I wasn’t supposed to survive. I wasn’t supposed to make it this far. I wasn’t supposed to be a millionaire. I wasn’t supposed to be a sex symbol. I wasn’t supposed to be on the cover of PEOPLE, but I am. So how can I make this worthwhile? How can I make this not just a flash in the pan?'”