The Latest Body-Shaming Trend on Instagram Will Make Your Blood Boil

First it was the thigh gap. Then the bikini bridge. Then the belly button challenge. If you've been on Instagram lately, you've probably noticed that a new body topic is gaining a lot of steam: hip dips. Unlike those other hashtags, this is a body trait that the powers-that-be have deemed "undesirable", meaning that women aren't just engaging in negative self-talk about the innocuous "dip" between the hips and thighs — they're actually going to extreme measures to get rid of them.

pretty personal/nerve wracking post because I've never ever posted anything about this before (let alone an old image from 2012 in the second picture) but I think it's important. the #bodypostive movement is v. close to my ❤️ as both a (very much) recovered anorexia sufferer and someone growing up in a society where social media (and it's unrealistic expectations) is so powerful. the body positive movement has been really helpful over the years, full of inspiring + healthy women normalising all shapes and sizes. thankfully, after years of work + perseverance I am a confident and very very happy human being but body hang ups of course still exist (e.g. my dislike of having little scoops on my hips instead of a perfect hourglass shape). But instead of hiding my insecurities, I've learnt it's important to embrace and accept, so here is my contribution to body positivity and a mini celebration of #hipdips and #recovery because nothing beats being healthy 💜

A post shared by Francesca Burt (@francescaburt) on

Luckily, some brave Insta ladies are speaking out — and loudly. Instagram user Francesca Burt garnered plenty of applause when she wrote a confessional post about her struggles with anorexia and body image issues, culminating in a totally-empowering call for her followers to embrace their bodies in all their forms.

Proudly displaying her #hipdips for all to see in an adorable red swimsuit, she wrote "I've learnt it's important to embrace and accept, so here is my contribution to body positivity and a mini celebration of #hipdips and #recovery because nothing beats being healthy." Amen, girl.

All these Instagram body fads do is pit woman against woman, holding each to an unattainable standard while demolishing self-confidence in the process. And while Instagram is still full of those who are engaging in these body-policing "challenges" and comparing every inch of themselves to the bodies in their feeds, we're glad to see a counter-movement ramping up.

Another user, @plankingforpizza, shrugged off the assumption that hip dips are "flaws" at all, stating "...Sometimes you just gotta embrace how you're made and realize that a lot of the things we are often insecure about are TOTALLY NORMAL and societally driven to make us feel insecure!"

🎶 "I put my hand up on yo hip, when I dip, you dip, we dip" 😅 #sorrynotsorry #couldnthelpmyself 🙃 Lately I've seen several posts about "hip dips" and I initially thought "Greattttt is this another thing to be insecure about?? Do I have them?? What is this mystical creature of body distortion to be concerned about? 🦄Because my hips don't lie" 😂 And of course recently I opened Pinterest and one of the first pins suggested was "How to get rid of hip dips" so I thought maybe I should research this 🤔 Turns out, I've got them, pretty prominent ones too! But I'm not going to beat myself up over it or try to change them because they are totally normal and anatomically determined! You can't change your hip placement, and losing more fat or "targeting your hip fat" won't change pelvis and hip placement either. Im most likely always going to have them despite my BF% and I'm totes ok with that! Point being, sometimes you just gotta embrace how you're made and realize that a lot of the things we are often insecure about are TOTALLY NORMAL and societally driven to make us feel insecure! But guess what? Hate to break it to ya, but your insecurities are not what make you special, because probably like 99% of the population has those same things too! Stop letting your insecurities and "flaws" (dislike that word), things that are SO normal to define you! You want to feel special? You already are by you being YOU! Sure we might all look different and have physical characteristics that make us all unique, but what truly sets you apart is not surface level, it's much deeper, much more meaningful, and far more everlasting than that 🌿✨💕 Anddd because a lot of people ask, wearing @victoriasport 😘 - #hipdips #girlswithmuscle #fitspo #healthy #macrocounting #workout #fuckyourbeautystandards #gymlife #tbt #fitness #orlandofitness #weightloss #abs #bodybuilding #throwback #weighttraining #workout #flexinadress #workoutmotivation #fitfam #iifymgirl

A post shared by Jess : Orlando, FL ☀️🌊🌴 (@plankingforpizza) on

Indeed, half the body "problems" we see on the internet are just manifestations of our naturally different body shapes, daily routines and genetics.

One user, athlete and self-proclaimed "fitness freak" Riley Thyfault, took things a step further to break down the idea that hip dips are undesirable in the first place. Riley correctly asserted that the presence of hip dips "just means that my hip flexors and outer quads are my dominate muscles." Translation? "It means my legs are super strong," she says (and one look at her Instagram makes it pretty tough to argue with that).

At the end of the day, though, the argument about whether or not hip dips are desirable is beside the point. Though the viral hashtags keep changing, the truth of the matter is that hip dips are just the latest way denizens of the internet are policing female bodies — something that will doubtlessly continue, and that will continue to harm women both mentally and physically.

That's why our favorite #hipdip hashtaggers are those who are rejecting the phase, shrugging off assumptions about what their bodies are supposed to be, and flipping the bird to these so-called trends.

Though we all fall victim to negative self-talk and body comparisons sometimes, we love the empowering feeling of Instagram's most fabulous ladies kicking this superficial nonsense to the curb.