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Jordan Reid

Author; Founding Editor, Ramshackle Glam

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Backlash against harmful TikTok ‘legging legs’ trend a positive shift

Feb 8

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TikTok has recently banned a trend on its platform due to concerns that it was fostering negative body images and endorsing behaviors linked to eating disorders in women. The trend, known as “legging legs,” involved women and girls showcasing their slender legs while wearing leggings. Alongside TikTok’s official ban, users on the platform have been actively opposing the trend, highlighting its negative impact on self-image.

Straight Arrow News contributor Jordan Reid is relieved to see the backlash, particularly concerning her worries about the potential impact of these trends on her tween daughter.

And now they — we — have to feel bad about how our legs look in leggings, aka the most ubiquitous, and, it must be said, wonderful and comfortable item in most of our wardrobes. It’s almost as if there’s an entire industry built on the concept of women hating ourselves. On the plus side, many TikTok users have revolted against the term. 

And, in a rare example of a social media company actually doing the right thing, you can no longer search for “legging legs” on TikTok. If you do, you get an image with the caption: “You’re not alone. If you or someone you know is having a hard time, help is always available,” and a link to eating disorder resources — which is truly, truly great and something I’d really love to see become standard practice for social media companies. But even more than that, it’s been exciting to see women — real women, real social media users — flat out rejecting this concept at almost the instant it began to gain traction. 

We are done. We are exhausted from decades, centuries, eons spent hating our bodies, and we are tired of our very selves being positioned as trends for the sole benefit of those who profit from our desire to fit into a predetermined mold. Let’s say that again, all together. Our bodies are not trends. They’re miracles.

It’s 2024, so of course we have a new way for women to feel bad about their bodies. 

 

The latest iteration of the “you’re not good enough so don’t even try” trope – see also: thigh gap, heroin chic, hip dips, cellulite – comes via the TikTok trend called “legging legs,” a term that began trending last month. Legging legs. As in, legs that look good in leggings. 

 

Which, I would venture, is either all legs or none of them, depending on your perspective on the acceptability of athleisure, but apparently means “skinny legs.” Ones that fit the white, wealthy Lulu Lemon mold. 

 

Recall here, please, that the CEO of Lulu Lemon ended up being forced to step down after stating that he didn’t actually want bigger women shopping – or working – in his stores, because it was off-brand. But that’s a story for another day. 

 

My friends. I am trying to raise a daughter in a world that tells her to avoid being too fat/too skinny/wear makeup/don’t wear makeup/be smart but not intimidatingly so, — you know what? Just go watch the America Ferrara monologue from Barbie again. 

 

It is impossible, as a woman, to feel like you’re doing it right. 

 

And now they – we – have to feel bad about how our legs look in…leggings. Aka the most ubiquitous – and, it must be said, wonderful and comfortable – item in most of our wardrobes. It’s almost as if there’s an entire industry built on the concept of women…hating themselves. 

 

On the plus side, many TikTok users have revolted against the term. 

 

And! In a rare example of a social media company doing the right thing, you can no longer search for “legging legs” on TikTok – if you do, you get an image with the caption: “You’re not alone. If you or someone you know is having a hard time, help is always available” and a link to eating disorder resources. 

 

Which is – truly – great. And something I’d really love to see become standard practice for social media companies. But even more than that, it’s been exciting to see women – real women, real social media users – flat-out rejecting this concept at almost the instant it began to gain traction. 

 

We are done. We are exhausted from decades spent hating our bodies, and we are tired of our very selves being positioned as trends for the sole benefit of those who profit from our desire to fit into a predetermined mold.

 

Let’s say that again, all together. Our bodies. Are. Not. Trends. They’re miracles.

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