Gabrielle, 19: Born and raised in Atlanta, GA, to her former fashion-designer mother, currently an artist, student, and founder of The Stripped Project, a subversive art project about reality, body image, and beauty.
What’s your number one women-related issue that really gets under your skin?
I’m sick of unhealthily thin women being idolized. I get so angry when my friends complain about their belly fat or I see an article on some new expensive fad diet, because I’ve been there and I know what it’s like to hate your body. I used to obsess over my thighs, my stomach, and especially my breasts. I desperately wanted to look like a little boy — flat-chested, no hips, all bones and angles — because I thought that would make me happy. I thought looking a certain prescribed way would make me loveable. Eventually I realized that I wasn’t missing anything. Being thinner didn’t make me happy. All those women who live on lettuce and lime jello are not enjoying themselves. They’re dying.