Nov 27, 2020
Interviews & inspiration | Daniela Pisciottano
We interviewed Instagram influencer Lauren Edge to ask her about her path to happiness and how finding the confidence in herself helped her become a stronger woman and mother.
Body-positivity is finally becoming the new normal on social media, however many women are still not comfortable enough to ditch the filters and show off their gorgeous selves. Do you have any tips to stop caring about what people think to live a happier life?
Firstly I want to say I love that it is becoming normal to see that on social media . For years it’s been a toxic place for young women. I think filters are totally fine for just aesthetic purposes, I use them myself for my photos but that’s exactly what people should remember, Instagram is filtered.
I think it’s very easy to become caught up with what people think about you but ultimately we need to remember people are more worried about what’s happening in their lives than other peoples and if someone is saying something negative about you that is totally on them.
Your happiness is the most important thing and no one is going to look after that apart from you. I look at my happiness as a bubble and only people I allow close to me will affect that. If it’s out of your hands, it deserves freedom from your mind too.
In a recent instagram video you revealed that you suffer from acne breakouts near your period and your husband recently told you your skin was looking good. How important is a partner’s attitude to boost one’s self-confidence?
It’s hugely important to me. Without his encouragement and support I would never have been able to start posting on Tiktok and Instagram. Having the backing of a supportive partner to say “you’re doing amazing, why are you worrying? “ is sometimes all you need. If I have days of self doubt he’s right there to lift me back up and encourage me again.
You’re mum to a little boy, so what values are you teaching him to make him a better man one day?
He is still so young but my husband and myself are very affectionate people. We encourage lots of cuddles and I think just teaching him by example and seeing how much his parents support each other will be really important. If anything it’ll be my husband proving that roles like cooking and cleaning aren’t just ‘female jobs’ and seeing how much my husband supports and celebrates me will surely make him a great man one day.
You say that promoting body-positivity is the same thing as promoting self-love and we couldn’t agree more! How do you respond to the critics that being body-positive equals to promoting obesity?
Those people saying that body positivity is promoting obesity are the same people thinking just because someone is skinny it equals health and it doesn’t. There can be a ton of reasons why someone is overweight. Let’s use PCOS as one, I’ve watched my sister struggle with her weight her whole life and never knew why until she was around 17. The people saying that I promote obesity are the same people who don’t really care about your health they just want to make you feel bad for existing and loving yourself when you don’t fit into their idea of the perfect body. Mental health matters too and how you feel about yourself is hugely important. I encourage people to love themselves at any size so if they did choose to loose weight it will be for the right reasons and not because they feel societal pressures.
In a recent Tiktok video you explained how seeing all these models in bikinis on Instagram was slowly chipping at your confidence so you finally unfollowed. What role do you think social media plays in a young woman’s growth?
When I was growing up there were only MSN and MySpace but there were still toxic magazines pulling celebrities apart for an extra bit of belly fat. Then in comes Instagram and to be honest I didn’t realise what a toxic place it was for me for such a long time but one day I sat there and thought ‘why am I putting all my energy into thinking how amazing these women look and not putting that into myself’.
I know young girls are experiencing the same thing from daily messages I receive. Hitting that unfollow button and following accounts celebrating bodies that have cellulite, stretch marks and aren’t perfectly toned is the way forward for future happiness while on social media. Accounts like mine are slowly taking over and soon hopefully millions of girls will be seeing our posts and not photoshopped unrealistic pictures.
Lockdown has proven to be a tough time for everyone, with Instagram constantly showcasing pictures of gorgeous models while all we wanted to do was stuff our faces in bed. How did you manage to stay focused on loving yourself without letting social media get to you?
I think we forget in these unprecedented times that it’s very easy to focus on the negatives rather than feeling grateful about the positives. It’s very easy to sit there unproductively scrolling through social media for hours and not realising how that can impact on our mental health. I have had instances where I have come off Instagram feeling very deflated and ultimately like my life compares unfavourably to others.
You can feel bad about yourself but in reality we all need to remember Instagram is a highlight reel. We don’t know what’s real and what’s fake and that is what we ultimately need to remember. We can’t compare our journeys to others you’re punishing yourself unnecessarily. It’s important to look around and see what you do have and not what you don’t. Your health, your family and a positive mindset is all you need.