Love Island contestant Alexandra Cane has criticised the show for not including a greater variety of body sizes, claiming that those who are larger wouldn’t have been “accepted”.
However, one of the most widely discussed topics was the apparent lack of body diversity among the participants in the villa.
When Alexandra entered the villa in July, many fans of the show were delighted to see a female contestant who represented their body shape on screen.
“Alexandra has a curvy body and when she sits down she has stomach rolls,” one person wrote on Twitter. “Finally the represented that I needed.”
However, in Alexandra’s opinion, there's far more that needs to be done to make Love Island more inclusive of different body types.
“It is great that I was relatable to so many girls and they saw me as a normal shape,” she told The Sun Online.
“But the crazy thing is, I’m a size eight so for that to be curvy - the barrier wasn’t broken.
“Bigger sizes clearly weren’t accepted, for me as a size eight to go into the villa and be the biggest girl that is quite shocking to me. I’m still glad I could do it for the ladies.”
When Love Island returned on ITV in early June, the reality show promptly received an onslaught of criticism online from people claiming that it was perpetuating damaging body ideals.
“Love Island continues to glorify the male and female body in a way which only promotes one stereotypical look,” Liam Preston, head of body confidence campaign Be Real, told The Independent.
“Given the programme’s popularity among a young audience, it would have been an opportune moment to show that love isn’t just about looks, however, the show’s casting is encouraging a one-dimensional viewpoint of attraction,” he said.
Earlier this month, Love Island winner Jack Fincham spoke on Good Morning Britain about the body insecurities that he felt before entering the villa, revealing that he almost pulled out from the show.
“Just before I went in I was a bit like ‘I can’t do it, I can’t do it,’ Then I thought do you know what, this is a big opportunity, just go for it and use your personality, so I just went in, I went for it,” he said.
“But I was so body conscious going in there at the start, and then as it went on I was being more free with my body.”
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