Growing up, I never saw people on television or in movies who looked like me: I’m bi-racial, since my mother is Filipina and my father is Caucasian. Thankfully, that’s changed, and we now see far more diversity. However, I still feel that our society has some work to do when it comes to celebrating #RealWomen with #RealBodies and portraying them in advertising campaigns. I love that young girls can now see models like Ashley Graham and Alex LaRosa, who are making a splash and proving that beauty comes in all shapes and sizes.
To say that my weight has been a struggle my entire life is an understatement. In fact, the first word I learned in my mom’s native language was “tabachoy.” I won’t publish the literal translation from Tagalog, because it’s not flattering — and it was the first word people would say when they met me as a child.
When I put my mind to it, I CAN lose weight. Last summer, I slimmed down enough to where my father-in-law mistakenly thought I was my teen niece. But the moment I quit dieting, I gained back every pound I had lost, plus 5 extra!
My size directly impacts my confidence level, although I wish I could say it didn’t. I admire my fellow bloggers Sahily with Pretty in Pigment and April with April GoLightly, who are positive body advocates and beautiful role models. But if I’m being 100% honest with myself, I know I’m not mentally where I need to be.
Earlier this month, another blogger friend, Christina with Mascara Maven and More, asked me, “Why haven’t I seen you posting as frequently on your Beauty News YouTube channel?” I told her that I felt my face looks bloated, and she responded, “It makes me sad to even hear you say such a thing.” She was right — we shouldn’t bash ourselves, even in conversations with friends.
One moment that I recall vividly from back in my news anchoring days was when a viewer wrote “Angela has shoulders like an NFL linebacker.” That stung me deeply – it still does! – but my former clothing selections of boxy jackets certainly didn’t flatter my body type like they could have.
Thankfully, I’m blessed with excellent health, a supportive husband who frequently tells me I’m beautiful, and good energy. I’m trying to prioritize a sustainable, healthful way of eating, so it’s a work in progress. Meantime, one of the problems with my perpetual yo-yo dieting is that the costs add up, and I’m not talking about food – having to buy an entire new wardrobe every time I lose or gain weight is expensive. In my closet right now, there are literally RACKS of clothes that I don’t fit.
That’s where wardrobe subscriptions come in handy. Dia&Co is plus sized clothing and wardrobe styling for real women, and when they reached out for me to try their subscription service, I was excited to see what they offered.
I feel so much more confident when I have on a stylish outfit that’s flattering and comfortable – and I’m thrilled to report that the clothing I was sent from my stylist, Ashby, made me feel fierce! I tried on the first item I unboxed, which was a patterned dress I normally would not have chosen. I styled it exactly as Ashby advised, by pairing the dress with a denim jacket and a neutral wedge shoe. When I looked in the mirror, I felt trendy and fashionable.
Information about Dia&Co from the website: “Dia&Co is a body-positive styling service for women who wear sizes 14 and up. You’ll get a Dia Box with five garments hand-picked by your stylist. The $20 styling fee will be applied to any purchase you make from your Box. Keep what you love, send back the rest. Shipping both ways is always free!”
I sent back a couple of items from my first box (you have 5 days to try everything on), but my second box was spot-on for my taste and style. I also loved that Ashby’s personal note referenced a dress she chose for me — she wrote that it would “look great on TV,” which was so sweet! But I loved the colored pants and black jacket so much, I’m actually planning to wear those instead for my appearance next week – so tune in to see how they look on air! Too bad I can’t carry this purse with me to the studio, because it is super-cute. Can we say, “Date Night Inspo”?!
My hope with sharing my story here is because I believe we need to show the next generation that style is style at any size. You’ve heard me say in recent videos that I want to help you “look your best, so you can feel your best.” I know that’s so much more than what we’re wearing; it’s a mindset – and we should be accepting, not ashamed, of all women’s bodies. I want my nieces to see me loving myself on my social media, and that starts with me challenging conventional beauty standards. Let’s celebrate all kinds of diversity!
Try Dia&Co yourself for $20 off: https://www.dia.com/r/l7ru
Disclosure: Dia&Co sent me complimentary boxes to try their service. This is not a sponsored post, I just like this company. All opinions are my own.