Award shows are not usually known for or obligated to cater to body positivity, but with the popularity of the feminist movement rising over the last couple of years, things have started to shift. Only last year did the Grammys begin to embrace feminism publicly (albeit the awards show arguably did so poorly), but moments of body positivity at the Grammys can be found over the years nontheless. Most often from the stars receiving the awards rather than the committee giving them out.
For some stars, even their appearance or outfits are enough to be praised as acts of body positivity. Too often, the media is dominated by thin celebrities and strict beauty standards, so simply seeing a musician who doesn't submit to these rules can feel like a revelation sometimes.
For others, their body positivism is a specific action planned and perfected for this glamorous award show. Regardless of whether it's strategic or not, these kinds of moments are what we need more of at industry events that often perpetuate conventional beauty above all else. By introducing body positivity to the whole affair, awards season could become a lot more progressive — not just for the stars involved, but for those viewing at home.
Hopefully this year, the Grammys will wow us with more body positivity than ever before. But if not, here are some throwback body positive moments to celebrate anyway.
1. J. Lo's Versace Dress, 2000
This dress is ridiculously iconic, to the point where it's even been displayed in museums. The plunging neckline past the belly button is J. Lo presenting her body on her own terms. While the world watched intently for a nip slip, Lopez never gave one. And the courage and power it took to wear this dress, let alone rock it so unapologetically, was clearly a body positive act.
2. Brooke Axtell's Speech, 2015
Domestic abuse survivor Brooke Axtell took to the stage last year after being introduced by Barack Obama to give a much-needed domestic abuse PSA. The bravery it took to discuss this subject in public, purely because she knew it would help so many people watching, is one of the most revolutionary acts to ever happen at an awards show, IMO.
3. Adele Smashing Records, 2012
In 2012, Adele became the second woman ever — following Beyoncé's footsteps — to pick up six Grammy awards in one night. Seeing a plus size woman succeed so well was inspirational.
4. Rihanna, Kanye West, & Paul McCartney Collaborating
Seeing three very different artists from unique backgrounds come together to not only create "FourFiveSeconds," but to perform it together on stage was an important moment for diversity.
5. Madonna Killing It, 2015
6. Pink Flying, 2010
Pink has proven herself a body positive role model many times, but this 6-year-old performance is the perfect reminder that women can do anything. Considering the star was 30 at the time — and I'd personally argue that women ages 30 and above are often looked down on for "losing their youth" — it's another argument against the kind of ageism that only values those in their teens and early 20s.
7. MIA Performing On Her Due Date, 2009
Political rapper MIA stole the show in 2009 with not only a killer performance, but by performing while heavily pregnant. It was a body positive moment for pregnant people everywhere, proving that you don't lose any of your worth during pregnancy or post-pregnancy. She looked amazing in a House Of Holland see-through dress that rivaled Kim Kardashian's pregnancy wardrobe.
8. Beyoncé Reviving Tina Turner, 2008
As well as performing with icon Prince at the Grammys, Beyoncé also brought Tina Turner out of retirement to perform "Proud Mary" at the 2008 Grammys. It was an amazing moment for solidarity amongst women, as well as proof that talent doesn't have an expiration date. And let's not ignore Turner rocking a skin-tight silver jumpsuit at age 68. What a queen!
9. Tasha Cobb's Gorgeous Gown, 2014
This Grammy winner's outfit was the perfect argument against anyone who believes curvier women should make themselves as invisible as possible. This beautiful blue dress was undoubtedly stunning.
I can only hope that the 2016 Grammy Awards give us at least one moment akin to these, so we can continue with the body positivity trend into this new year.