Loose Women's 'Body Stories: Celebrating Every Body' campaign to mark International Women's Day
Loose Women announces the return of its award-winning Body Stories campaign to celebrate body diversity and highlight the importance of representation, as 75 per cent of viewers admit they avoid looking in the mirror because of how it makes them feel about their body.
This year’s ‘Celebrating Every Body’ campaign sees a host of the UK’s most recognisable female faces and Loose Women panellists including Carol McGiffin, Dame Kelly Holmes, Gloria Hunniford OBE, Judi Love, Katie Piper OBE and Sophie Morgan take part in an inspiring Body Stories photo shoot for the first time, as well as candidly share their own body stories.
Marking International Women’s Day next Wednesday (8th March), a Loose Women Body Stories special will air at 12.30pm on ITV1 & ITVX, continuing the campaign's pledge to lead the conversation on the issues affecting women’s body confidence today.
An exclusive Loose Women survey reveals six in 10 women still don’t think there is enough body diversity in the media and despite almost half (42%) believing representation has improved in the past five years, they agree there is still a long way to go.
Highlighting the importance of ‘Celebrating Every Body’, the new research finds that more than three quarters (78%) agreed it’s important to see relatable body types in the media - including older women, disabled women and those from different ethnic backgrounds. 65 per cent of those polled, respectively attribute this to normalising differences and encouraging acceptance.
The findings also revealed over half (57%) say they have no body confidence but more than a fifth (23%) would feel better about themselves if they saw people they identify with in the media.
A further 65% admitted lack of body confidence has stopped them from doing things they’d like to, such as going swimming (58%) and wearing activewear (39%) - with a quarter (24%) blaming a general lack of confidence in themselves and one in five (18%) putting it down to feeling insecure about their body.
The campaign promo premiered on ITV1 this evening, to announce the campaign and in it, Katie Piper OBE can be heard saying: “Change doesn’t happen from one person, it happens from a group of people who have the same passion” whilst Dame Kelly Holmes explains: “For me it’s about being comfortable with who I am. We all deserve to live the life we want to live.”
Loose Women Editor Sally Shelford says: "Loose Women’s Body Stories campaign was originally launched in 2017 to inspire and promote body confidence for all of our viewers. We are so proud that it is returning for International Women's Day with a powerful, joyful shoot and an equally powerful message on the importance of celebrating and seeing body diversity."
With seven in ten (70%) also confessing that they avoid having their photo taken due to a lack of body confidence, our Loose Women panel exclusively stand together for the striking new ‘Body Stories’ imagery - brought to life by highly acclaimed female photographer Yolanda Y Liou - in a bid to help viewers feel seen and represented.
Yolanda’s previous work, which often explores body image and her own experiences of feeling unconfident in her appearance, has previously been exhibited in the National Portrait Gallery, as well as having been shortlisted for the prestigious Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize.
Photographer Yolanda Y Liou said: “I feel really grateful to be part of creating this wonderful campaign, to celebrate all different body types. Working with these amazing women was such a joyful experience and whilst they all have very different stories, what they have in common is that they fully embrace who they are. The courage and energy of turning every obstacle into something glorious and the love of life that they share is truly inspirational.”
During the Loose Women Body Stories special on International Women’s Day, we’ll hear from Carol McGiffin as she speaks honestly about surviving breast cancer and undergoing a mastectomy, broadcasting legend Gloria Hunniford OBE as she talks passionately about the need to see older women in the media and how attitude is everything! Plus, Judi Love, discusses the beauty of seeing different body types represented in all their forms.
Disability campaigner Sophie Morgan will share her powerful story of body acceptance and how she's adapted and embraced life with a disability, as she now feels stronger than ever. Katie Piper OBE will also inspirationally express the need for greater inclusion of facial disfigurements on our screens as a result of her own lived experiences and Olympic champion Dame Kelly Holmes will movingly reveal her journey from double-gold medallist to LGBT+ champion.
Once again this year, Loose Women will be asking everyone to continue ‘Celebrating Every Body’ and join the conversation on social media by using #MyBodyMyStory and tagging @loosewomen on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook, as well as @loosewomenofficial on TikTok, to share their own body stories, alongside our very own panellists.
Loose Women’s first groundbreaking Body Stories was launched in 2017 with honest, unedited pictures of the panellists, shot by singer and celebrity photographer Bryan Adams - with the slogan: “You can look, but you can’t retouch”.
Since then, the campaign has tackled a range of topics affecting our body confidence today, from photo editing to social media filters, to encourage body acceptance one conversation at a time, as well as inviting a host of famous men to take part in a body positivity shoot, shot by award-winning photographer Rankin.
Watch the Loose Women Body Stories special on Wednesday 8th March at 12.30pm on ITV1 & ITVX ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Survey conducted by 72Point in February 2023
Survey sample size: 2,000 UK: Women 18+