Patricia Arquette's Body Positivity Is Inspiring

by Kaitlin Reilly

Hollywood isn't exactly forgiving of aging actresses — it's a sad reality that our culture worships youth and perfection and tends to shun celebrities who don't meet our warped standards. That's why it's so refreshing to hear Best Supporting Actress winner (for her 12 year long role in Boyhood) Patricia Arquette talk about loving her teeth, and how she just doesn't give a damn about what people think of her body. In a new interview for People Magazine the actress was frank about the sexist pressure put on women to change their bodies, whether it be pressure to combat the aging process or "perfect" perceived flaws.

Arquette told People that one of her earliest experiences with body-shaming was from a boy in her ninth grade class who told her that she could "pose for Playboy" if she only fixed her crooked teeth.

"I said, 'Why would I want to be in Playboy?'" Arquette told the magazine. "I just didn't want to look perfect. I didn't want to have to change myself to be attractive. I didn't think that was my responsibility."

She also added that, when it comes to her film roles, she's sick of talking about how she looks — something she notes that men get asked about very infrequently. "I've had so many of these conversations in my life ... what I look like on film, what I don't look like on film... Why is aging a conversation? It's a one-sided conversation because it's only ever had by women."

Arquette isn't the only Oscar-nominated woman to speak out about the pressure put on women in Hollywood to look a certain way. Here are four other talented ladies who called Hollywood's double standards out.

Julianne Moore


Moore, who took home the Best Actress Oscar in 2015 for her role in Still Alice, has a pretty amazing view on aging, which she believes should be done as naturally as possible, sans the help of plastic surgery: "I don't want to come out condemning anything anybody does, because I think that all of these things can contribute to making people feel better about themselves, and that's great. But I also want to look like myself. I mean, we're not going to live forever. You could be dead at 45, and guess what? Then you don't have to worry about aging."

Viola Davis


The two-time Oscar nominee spoke up against industry standards for women of color, specifically black women, after The New York Times referred to the actress in a review as "less classically beautiful" than Scandal star Kerry Washington. She didn't let the offensive comment go, and told the panel on The View : "Being a dark-skinned black woman, you heard it from the womb. And ‘classically not beautiful’ is a fancy term for saying ugly and denouncing you and erasing you."

Jennifer Lawrence


The young actress may be one of the most beloved stars out there, but even she has faced criticism for her body since stepping into the spotlight. But Lawrence wasn't okay with changing herself to fit Hollywood's narrow standards — instead, she took a stand against body-shamers at a Q&A hosted by Yahoo, stating: "Shows like the Fashion Police and things like that are just showing these generations of young people to judge people based on all the things that are wrong, and that it’s okay to just point at people and call them ugly, and call them fat... with these unrealistic expectations for women, it’s disappointing that the media keeps it alive and fuels that fire."

Kate Winslet


The Best Actress winner for The Reader is a superstar when it comes to body-positive quotes. Winslet is the first person to admit that the Hollywood body standard is a mere illusion — hardly anyone actually has the natural body type of the stars we see on the screen. She told Vanity Fair Italia : "I believe it is important to go on insisting that normality is not what we are exposed to. Honestly, among my acquaintances there is no woman wearing XS. No, sorry, there is one: my daughter. The point is that Mia is 11 years old.”

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