Charli Howard is a British model who is absolutely done with being body shamed.
Howard recently posted a before-and-after photo to highlight that being thin doesn't mean being happy — or healthy.
She describes her "before" as "that miserable girl on the left, whose gums were always bleeding, hair was falling out, periods didn't come etc." She adds she never wants to look like that again.
But there's another reason why she posted her transformation.
Two weeks prior, as she explains in the caption in the above photo, she posted only the image on the right, because, "In the words of Nicki Minaj, I was 'feelin' myself' ... despite being in Texas and having eaten more food than is humanly necessary. But hey, it was a holiday, and I was enjoying myself. Life isn't about restricting."
However, she was soon bombarded with negative comments. "In a nutshell," she writes, of the above photo, or, the "after" photo, "I was described as 'fat,' 'ugly,' 'arrogant,' and 'not model material'. One person said I should go and work in porn because that's all I was good for. I just began sobbing at Austin Airport, which was a bit embarrassing, but it was a reflection of how I felt inside. MORTIFIED. Ashamed. FAT."
She thought about how she used to look ("on the left") and thought "how I should stop eating for the rest of the day, or start over exercising to compensate."
"But then a random lady came over to me and gave me a hug out of the blue. Like those dickheads on the internet, she was a total stranger, but she decided to show me kindness, despite not knowing me or why I was crying. I suddenly realised [sic] that my worth wasn't representative of some mean trolls on the internet. It's taken me years, but I LIKE MY BODY & MY SHAPE. I'm finally healthy. My body isn't validated by anyone else's views of me. And neither is yours!"
She ends her post offering some advice to those reading:
Be kind to other girls online. You never know how your words may affect someone.
Howard is still working as a model, but on her own terms. She's also the founder of the All Women Project, a foundation "aiming to better the life of girls and women worldwide by displaying a true, beautiful, positive and un-retouched image of women in photo and video campaigns" according to their website.
Like fellow model Liza Golden-Bhojwani, who posted a striking before-and-after photo of her own, Howard is much happier when she's not fighting against her own body.