Social media users are not too happy with a piece of style advice found in O, The Oprah Magazine.
A Brooklyn-based writer took a picture of a blurb featured in a style Q&A in a recent issue of the women’s lifestyle publication that suggested readers should wear crop tops “If (and only if!) you have a flat stomach.”
Tamar Anitai posted the photo of the page to her Instagram on Tuesday, writing in the caption, “Surprised to see this level of #bodyshaming in [O, The Oprah Magazine]. The feature is about women feeling healthy. Part of health is self-esteem and that’s intrinsically connected to body image. Stop telling women what they CAN’T wear.”
“We can wear and do and be ANYTHING that makes us feel strong, powerful, passionate and in charge of our own destinies,” Anitai continued in the post. “I hope young women and women of any age don’t feel like they’re restricted by editorially imposed fashion ‘rules.’ The only rules are there are no rules. Wear what you love, what makes you feel confident, and own it. Confidence is power, and it’s contagious.”
“Last night, my friend Tamar tagged me the above Q&A she came across while reading O, The Oprah Magazine. I was shocked to see this kind of body shaming language from any magazine, much less one named after a woman who has had her weight scrutinized throughout her career. Furthermore, I’d hoped in the era of the fatkini, plus size bloggers, and Instagram hashtags that we’ve moved beyond such narrow-minded thinking, but I can see now that it’s time for a show & tell,” Conley wrote.
“Flat stomachs are like thigh gaps – we’re not all meant to have one. I know women who have worked out four hours a day, five days a week in pursuit of that dream only to be thwarted by genetics,” said the blogger.
Conley then called for people to rally together on social media with the special hashtag, #RockTheCrop, to promote a more body-positive message.
A spokesperson for O, The Oprah Magazine responded to the backlash in a statement obtained by PEOPLE, “We support, encourage and empower all women to look great, feel confident and live their best lives – in this case, we could have expressed it better. We appreciate the feedback and will be more mindful going forward.”