The Shape Debate: In Praise of Curves

09/22/2006 at 01:27 PM ET

There has been a lot of buzz this week about ever-shrinking starlets and too-skinny models. So we’d like to give props to a few women who always look great. Seeing Kate Winslet at the Toronto Film Festival reminded us how beautiful she is, and how she has never shied away from having a real body (and a great body, at that.) Gwyneth Paltrow, who in younger days was reed-thin, is now one hot mama with her voluptous post-baby body. Is it just us or does she seem to be glowing everytime you see her now? And in the younger generation, Scarlett Johansson makes a break with the stick-thin figures and celebrates her curves, bringing to mind screen sirens of days gone by. And yes, these women are still slim and have very enviable bodies (we’ll take looking like that in a dress any day!), but we applaud them for being comfortable in their own skin and hourglass figures. Marilyn would be proud.

If you’d like to let us know what you think about the shape debate, take PEOPLE’s Stars’ Bodies: Too Thin? poll, and if you like, leave a comment here.

CH/AAD/Star Max; Dennis Van Tine/Abaca; Fernando Allende/Splash News

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Showing 97 comments

Brenda on

How fantastic that curves are back in! I much prefer a Catherine Zeta Jones to a Nicole Ritchie any day. But what about those models who are gorgeous, but naturally stick-thin — or do they all just starve themselves?

dee on

They look great but all actresses succumb to this pressure. Even Kate Winslet was looking awfully thin about 1-2 years ago. Gwynneth Paltrow is now conveniently curvy after the oscar, & some kids. However, b/c she is no longer trying to be “THE actress of the moment”, she has a more believable weight. What strikes me about Bosworth and Ritchie is that they are very young (23 and 25 respectively) and that a lot of people go through this but are allowed to do so privately. Bosworth has particularly been in the spotlight since she was a teen and who we also know to have been a legitimate sportswoman in her past B4 it was envogue. I’m hoping this is just a moment of youth that will pass in time.

Sarah on

Here’s my take: Why are fashion designers choosing models that make their clothes look good? Shouldn’t it be the other way around? I challenge the designers to make clothes that look beautiful on real women, not stick figures. There’s a fine line between making clothing for artistic value and making clothing to make money. If the designers want to make art, then make art. But if they want to make beautiful clothes, then the clothing should look beautiful on a normal-sized body. I think that should be the next challege for designers: step out of your comfort zones and test your designing talent against REAL bodies. I wonder how many of you would succeed in making beautiful clothing for healthy women.

Erin on

I disagree with Erica and Stylemaven. Both of you said that you have always been naturally small, which is great. But if you think back at Nicole Richie and Kate Bosworth, they used to be normal and healthy looking. It’s not like they just appeared on the scene the way they look now. They aren’t healthy at all, and since they were healthier it IS possible for them to gain weight. I really could care less about what people think about curvy, etc. If I remember correctly, Kate Bosworth had to put on 30 pounds of muscle for Blue Crush…

katie on

Me, I’m a size 12, and I consider myself curvy. What are these women, size 6? Size 4? I’m sorry, but there is nothing voluptuous about these women. They are beautiful ladies, no doubt, but calling them “curvy” and “voluptous” is incorrect and insulting to real curvy and voluptous women out there.

l on

there’s no need to write essays on this, curvy women are healthier and better looking then skinny women, end of it

Seanan on

If a person is a size 6 today, her measurements are smaller than the iconic beauty Marilyn Monroe. I believe Marilyn Monroe would be approx. a size 8 today. Can you imagine Western society’s icon of feminine beauty would be considered overweight in Hollywood today. Look back at her movies, she doesn’t look “Fat” she is fabulous and sexy.

Also, remember that todays size 8 was a size 14 in 1960. So, a size 0 would wear a size 6 back then. Maybe we should quit vanity sizing clothing and accept who we are.

ashley on

i would certainly rather see these women on the cover of magazines than bosworth or richie. i’m still in high school, where the pressure of weight is the worst. my body is just like scarlett’s, and i’m still considered larger than most my peers. i would rather be my size 6 self than a size 0 any day.

Kayla on

I seriously think it’s great to see women embracing the idea of having a normal, curvy body. There rare far to many celebs who have ever shrinking frames and I love that Scarlet Johannson and the likes are standing up for their anything but size 0 bodies.

Joy on

i applaud these women…especially kate winslet! she looks very feminine and super sexy!!!

something that boggles my mind…if the average american woman is 5’4″ tall and 140 pounds (i’m 5’4″ and 138 pounds, so i fit in this category myself!), why is it that models are on average 5’9″ tall and 110 pounds? i mean…who are they marketing products to? at the end of the day, i need clothes that fit me, not just clothes that look great on some super skinny model on tv or in magazines! you know?

plus…i do think that seeing ladies like kate bosworth and nicole richie flaunting their stick-figures around on every magazine cover must some how project the wrong image for young women these days. it’s a real shame, and i hope more countries follow spain in forbidding super skinny models on the runway.

besides…don’t men like women with SOME meat on them? i know my husband does!!! ;-) who wants to hug someone who feels like skin and bones? UCK!!!

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