Belfast Telegraph

Banks' lifelong body image struggle

Tyra Banks has said she has always struggled with her body image, despite being one of the world's most famous models.

The presenter of America's Next Top Model admitted that she had never felt her body was perfect, but that her mum helped her to accept who she was.

She said: "Body image is a really important issue. For me, it really started with not feeling confident in my own body when I was a very young girl, about 11 years old. I was very thin, there was nothing I could do to gain weight, and I was very sad.

"Then when I started being a fashion model, about five years in, I started to gain weight - and I was told I was too fat. So after experiencing not feeling positive about myself being small, and being bigger, this is something I'm very passionate about."

Tyra explained how her mum had helped to develop her confidence.

She said: "She's been very supportive of me when I wasn't feeling good about myself. Throughout my teens, she knew the words to tell me, that actually, as a fashion model, my physicality was a product. It wasn't my heart and soul and spirit they were saying wasn't good enough if I didn't get hired. Not every product's right for every job.

"That allowed me to separate myself from the job, and that's been very instrumental."

:: Tyra Banks has partnered with Kellogg's Special K to encourage women to think more positively and adopt a more sustainable and enjoyable approach to managing their shape. For more information, visit www.myspecialk.co.uk.

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