Love Island criticised for lack of body diversity with contestants

'I wonder if there will ever be anyone remotely curvy in Love Island?'

Olivia Petter
Tuesday 05 June 2018 12:17 BST

Love Island has finally returned to screens and the popular dating show is already causing controversies after its first episode aired on Monday.

The contestants might have only just met - and are presumably “sticking it on” one another at this very moment - but have quickly come under scrutiny as a result of their homogenised body types.

Celebrities and body positive advocates vehemently voiced their frustrations on social media with the introduction of each honed and toned contestant, expressing concerns at the paucity of physical diversity that is set to grace the nation’s screens for the next eight weeks.

In the words of quippy contestant Niall, the girls look “like Instagram”, with critics lamenting the distinct lack of body fat between them.

Meanwhile, the men are of a similarly strapping calibre, with bulging biceps and eight-packs aplenty.

"I know I shouldn’t be so surprised but I’m a bit disappointed by the lack of representation of female body types in #LoveIsland," wrote one person on Twitter.

"Don't know why I expected anything different, but they are all *so* thin this year - would be nice to see some girls with curves for once."

The 2018 Love Island contestants

Another argued that the show is "destroying young people’s confidence".

"Not everyone looks like a model in a bikini! No wonder so many people have body confidence issues."

Former Geordie Shore star Holly Hagan also weighed in on the debate, writing: "I wonder if there will ever be anyone remotely curvy in @LoveIsland".

"Catching up on the new Love Island, no better way to batter your self esteem all these beautiful ladies with amazing bodies," another person added.

Unfortunately, perpetuating unrealistic body ideals is nothing new for the programme, which is now in its third series; Love Island has been a prime concern for body positive activists since the advent of its current format in 2015.

Love Island continues to glorify the male and female body in a way which only promotes one stereotypical look," explains Liam Preston, head of the Be Real campaign, which aims to tackle attitudes regarding body image and promote body confidence across the UK.

"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 on attraction," he told The Independent.

"This could have been easily avoided by casting a more diverse range of body shapes and sizes.”

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