Don’t Apologize for Your Body

My good friend recently shared some words of wisdom on Facebook that truly blew me away. She said:

The body is not an apology. Or an excuse. Or a mistake. I really had to stop saying sorry for not having a perfect body. Call me crazy, but I’ve grown to find so much beauty in my imperfections.

Wow. My body is not an apology. My body is not an excuse. My body is not a mistake. Why have so many of us women been conditioned to think otherwise?

I’ll use myself as an example:

I don’t have a womanly figure because I don’t have wide hips. Apology.

I’m skinny because my mother was slim at my age. Excuse.

Big butts run in my family, but it skipped me. Mistake.

Why do women feel the need to explain themselves, how they look and how they’re built? Or say sorry to not having this “perfect shape?” We try to justify our seemingly imperfections even though we know not one person walking on this earth is perfect.

A friend and I talked about this subject once and we concluded, for most women, the thing that changed everything for us was boys. The day we, then as girls, got to a maturity and puberty level where the opposite sex became attractive to us, where they started to matter, is one of the worst days in a young girl’s life. Okay, okay, cutting the dramatics, it truly is an influential day or time because, in a sense, that’s when your innocence leaves.

Gone are the days of just being yourself. Now you need to be who they want you to be. You have to fix your hair this way, wear this shirt, laugh that way and all other kinds of nonsense to put on a show to be noticed by a boy. Of course, girls don’t have to do any of this, but tell me one who, at that age, never did?

I see so many young women and girls today who are still putting on a show trying to get the attention of some male. So many listen to what “guys like” or what “guys want,” as well as what the media pushes about standards of beauty, and in turn they start to apologize and make excuses for not living up to others’ standards.

It’s a vicious cycle, ladies, and we have to stop it. Like my friend, I hope we can all begin to find the beauty within our “imperfections” and teach the younger generations of women how to do the same.

I’ll start:

My body is not an apology, excuse or mistake. I am skinny and my butt is far from big. My nose is wide, I have oily skin and multiple blemishes that just won’t seem to fade no matter what cream I rub on them. My hair is thick and kinky and my breasts are a part of the itty-bitty committee. I am not perfect. But I am me, exactly the way God envisioned.

Service is her passion, writing is her platform, women and the Black Community are her avenues. Shala Marks is a writer, editor and soon-to-be author. Marks aspires to help make a difference in society through the messages in her writings. She has a B.A. in journalism from Arizona State University. Check her out at:


  1. Big butts run in my family, but it skipped me.

    Raise your hand if you have ever done this. I admit to saying this often in my younger days.

  2. Shala, thanks so much for this post. Your physical bio reads like mine…..Recently some of my friends have gotten breast implants and I was also considering it at one point some years ago. They claimed they couldn’t wear certain tops or bikinis because their chest was too small, etc… Because my relationship with God has grown tremendously I have this new found confidence and I am loving what He’s said about me “I am fearfully and wonderfully made, created in his image” I know your words will inspire more women to recognize their true beauty and flaunt who they really are with confidence, not buying in to what the world says they should look like, but truly embracing who they really are. Shala, girl you rock! And your sisters can we speak blog is absolutely Fab, cant wait for the next post!

  3. I really appreciate this article. I work out because I love it, but sometimes I do feel the need to make excuses. Also, I used to have a donk, but after 25 it changed. Still have one but not the same. lol!! Thanks, I’ll share this.

  4. Great article
    I have done the same things especially the missing big butt. I used to be making fun of my lack of booty. Thanks for reminding me that im perfectly imperfectly made. I no longer will be the punchline in my own jokes about my body which was the real mistake I was making.

  5. I’m built similar to Michelle Williams from Destinys Child and spent most of my life being past over for girls who look more like Melyssa Ford. I was flat in the front (I still don’t have to wear a bra and I am 29) and just as flat in the back. It was such a hassle growing up. I grew to accept myself only when I found a man who loved me and my little breasts and butt just the way they are. I admit to still not loving the way my body looks, but I do accept it more and have long since left the excuses behind.

  6. By the way, if I could choose my perfect body it would be Kelly Rowland. Kelly’s butt and B cups (yes, I know they are fake but they are perfectly fake, not bigguns) are perfect for high fashion clothes.

  7. I wanted bigger boobs when I was a teen. When I started to hear my big breasted friends complain about back aches and my close aunt tell me how quickly hers sagged for being young I grew out of wanting a book job quickly lol. I have been loving me for a long time. =)

  8. Thanks for reading ladies and sharing all of your stories! I don’t know how I ever missed all these great comments when this article was originally posted. @ALE thank you for reading my Sisters Can We Speak blog. I’m trying to get better at regularly posting on it!

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