When a photo with just the right blend of confidence, honesty, and relatability hits social media — especially when paired with a motivating caption — it can almost break the Internet. Lifestyle blogger
and mother of three, Rachel Hollis, posted such a photo to Facebook and Instagram earlier this week: a shot of her in a bikini on the beach while vacationing with her husband in Cancun.
"I have a belly that's permanently flabby from carrying three giant babies and I wear a bikini. My belly button is saggy...(which is something I didn't even know was possible before!!) and I wear a bikini," Hollis wrote. "I wear a bikini because I'm proud of this body and every mark on it. Those marks prove that I was blessed enough to carry my babies and that flabby tummy means I worked hard to lose what weight I could." As of time of writing, her Facebook post
had been liked 386,753 times and shared almost 50,000 times.
Hollis is slender and even makes mention of her postpartum weight-loss efforts — but what has proven more poignant to her fans is her pride in her "flabby" stomach and "saggy" belly button. Not only has she made peace with them, she announced, she's grown to love them as markers of her motherhood. The success of her post is another reminder that we're still starved for real and relatable representations of beauty, and inspired by the courage it (unfortunately) still requires to share our unedited likenesses with the world. Our philosophy at Refinery29: Every body is a bikini body — you just have to put a bikini on it.