Body-Shaming + Looking and Feeling Confident

Forever 21 navy color block bodycon dress straw bag blush sandals

I received some really awful messages recently regarding my body and the way I dress.  Body shaming is NOT acceptable and I feel like I need to address this issue.

Forever 21 navy color block bodycon dress straw bag blush sandals

What I choose to do with my body or how I dress is my choice and my choice only.  It may not be for everyone and that is perfectly fine with me.  The outfits that I’ve posted recently have been a lot of “going out” outfits.  Clothes that you wear on dates or when you go out with girlfriends to have a fun.

I know it may seem kind of shocking to see me in these more sexy or revealing clothes because I’ve never posted anything like it in all the years I’ve been blogging.  That’s because I never really had the opportunity to go out or wear any sexy outfits.  To be clear, these outfits are NOT something I would wear to the grocery store or on a day to day basis when I’m with Milan.  I was furious when I received messages that insinuated that I was dressing too provocatively and that it had a negative effect on Milan.

Anytime you bring my daughter into a conversation or message, I will literally go ape shit.  That is where I draw the line.  Do not ever bring my family or daughter into anything.  Say what you want about me but do not cross that line because you will see side of me that is very unpleasant.

Forever 21 navy color block bodycon dress straw bag blush sandals

Just because you’re a mom, doesn’t mean you can’t look or feel sexy.  Just because you’re a mom doesn’t mean you have to forget your identity.  You are still a woman.  A woman who can choose to wear whatever she wants to feel good about herself.  There is a huge difference between looking sexy and looking trashy.

I’ve been living in absolute hell for so many years and it’s taken everything I have to get to where I am today. Literally everything.

Confidence

I finally feel good about myself.  I feel good in my own skin.  I will not apologize for feeling confident.  I will not apologize for being sexy and I most certainly will not apologize for how I dress.  I’ve never felt as happy or as confident as I am today.  I’ve worked my ass off to feel whole again and I will not allow anyone to bring me down.  I will wear whatever the hell I want.  If it makes me feel good, I will wear it.

Forever 21 navy color block bodycon dress straw bag blush sandals

I am damn proud of the woman I am today and the woman I’ve become after the misery that I’ve been put through.  Finding the strength to pick myself back up, work full time and raise my daughter on my own is NOT freaking easy.  How did I do it?  Simple.  I put Milan’s needs above my own.  That is how I found strength.  I will never allow anyone to dictate my life EVER again.

Forever 21 navy color block bodycon dress straw bag blush sandals

It makes me sick how someone can sit behind their computer or hide behind their phones and judge others.  To all the trolls that body shame others, you should be ashamed of yourself.  Truly.  It’s disgusting behavior and I will say an extra prayer for you.  If you don’t like my outfits or content, please unsubscribe or unfollow.  It’s really not that difficult.  I’m not addressing this to give them unnecessary attention because we all know that’s what they thrive off of.  I’m sharing this because I think it’s important for women to support and build each other up instead of judging or body-shaming on another.

Forever 21 navy color block bodycon dress straw bag blush sandals

Thank you for letting me talk about this.  Now let’s get to this cute navy colorblock dress.  I love how simple it is.  Sexy yet still classy.  Sizing runs small and even smaller once you wash and dry it.  I’m wearing size small and as you can see, it’s very form fitting.  It’s a great summer dress for only $25!  Would recommend.

Forever 21 navy color block bodycon dress straw bag blush sandals

Dress: Forever 21 colorblock bodycon dress (size small) | Sandals: c/o Vince Camuto laser cut block heel sandals | Bag: c/o Talbots (similar HERE and HERE) | Necklace: Nordstrom Rack initial necklace

XO, Annie
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  1. You tell em, momma bear! Your and Milan’s happiness is all that matters, I’m sorry you have to deal with such rude people sometimes. You look great and more importantly, HAPPY! I like the fun outfits, and am glad that you’re showing a new side of yourself. Keeps you relateable. 🙂

    • Hi Elizabeth! LOL my momma bear comes out when anyone brings up Milan in a negative way. Yes I am so so HAPPY and I feel great (finally). These outfits are just a way of expressing my fun side which I never really had a chance to show! I love going out with my friends and letting loose. It’s a must! 🙂

  2. That’s a gorgeous dress but what really caught my eye was the bag, it looks so cute and it’s the perfect combination of a woven bag and a classy bag with that flap, it’s very original.
    And to all the people that left rude comments on your posts, please grow up. It’s 2019, I really thought body shammers and slut shammers had grown up but apparently, there’s still some out there. Just stay strong and do your thing, your happiness and confidence is all that matters and eventually, those people will get tired of seeing you not give a crap about what they say and they’ll give up and go back to their miserable lives.

    • Thank you Marta! Can I love this comment a million times! Seriously. You are the best. I honestly cannot believe the comments and messages I got. It was unreal. Such a shame. Thank you for being you and for being kind! Love you! XO

  3. Don’t worry about it. Most people who hide behind a screen and profusely shame others are miserable in aspects of their lives and don’t have the courage to ameliorate their situation.

    I been following your blog since 2010 and yes I too have seen a change. But you know what, change is the only consistent element in our lives and your change is refreshing, hopeful, and fierce.

    Live your life proudly!

    • Hi Monica! OMG since 2010?! That’s when I started so you literally have been with me since the beginning. I am so honored! Thank you. Love hearing how long people have been with me. Thank you so much for sticking with me all these years. WOW! Sending you a big hug! XO

  4. Love your dress in this most recent post and all the other clothes you wear! You are adorable-don’t let these unhappy and rude people bring you down. You look great and you deserve to show off what you can wear! You go, girl!:)

    • Thank you Dorothy! I really appreciate it! I will never apologize for being happy in my own skin. It’s taken me an eternity to feel good so they can screw off! LOL

  5. You bravely put yourself out there and it’s the risk you run in dealing with the public – people can be jerks. Be assured that most folks are like me – quietly appreciating your offerings here. I’m glad you refused delivery of their nonsense.

    • Thank you Jo! After 9 years of blogging, you’d think I’d be immune to this crap but it’s hard. I’m human too! Someone said my body is like a 13 year old boy. WTH? It’s crazy the kinds of comments or messages I get. Such a shame. Thank you for supporting me – means a lot.

  6. I am so tired of women shaming other women, and especially mothers shaming other mothers. It has got to stop. When will we see that we are all in this together?

    You look amazing. And I love that you don’t let internet strangers get you down! You have nothing to apologize for, so I’m glad you did not do so! And lady, even if you wanted to wear your sexy outfits to the grocery store who cares? It’s your business. Not anyone else’s. Keep on keeping on!

    • I love you Danielle! I couldn’t agree more. I guess people feel like they can say or do whatever they want behind the computer screen including shaming other women. UNBELIEVABLE. Disgusting behavior!

      Yes you are so right! Even if I wanted to wear sexy outfits to the grocery store…it’s my business! Thank goodness for women like you that actually GET IT. You are amazing. Sending hugs! XO

  7. Lovely! Could you please do a hair tutorial? I’d love to have hair like yours!

  8. I think you’re adorable whatever you wear. Some people want to troll or be holier than thou. Just wear what you like

  9. Hi Annie 2.0 – love the new you. Can you comment on the comfort of the sandals?
    Thank you!

  10. Well said! I have had a rough couple years with similiar situation based on what you have shared so I get it! I got out as well so happy! Have two girls. I love these going out clothes I just ordered the dress!

    • Hi Leah! OMG mama…you too? I am so sorry. I am so proud and freaking thrilled you got out and now happy. Isn’t it the BEST feeling EVER? You have 2 girls? Yay! You are a rock star. I barely survive with one. LOL

      Glad you ordered the dress – so comfy and cute and sexy! 🙂

      Here’s to a new life with no one holding us back! XO

  11. you are a beautiful young lady and you should own it. people who hate on you are probably jealous cuz you are so pretty and look great in all your clothes

  12. Annie,
    I am so sorry people are talking about you like that. I think your outfits are beautiful and classy. As a thin petite woman I can understand that people, especially other women choose to body shame because they are jealous. I have gone to the grocery store and received a look of utter jealousy/hate. Keep your chin up, those women have no clue what you have gone through. Don’t let those haters get to you.

    • Hi Susannah! So frustrating and disheartening! I just want to pull my hair out sometimes because I can’t believe that women can do this to other women! It’s crazy to me. I appreciate you and thank you for supporting me! XO 🙂

  13. You tell them mama! There is no shame in wanting to dress up once in awhile!! As a mother myself, it’s hard to dress up bc I’m always chasing my 3.5 year old around and I work in a corporate office so it’s always business attire. But when the opportunity presents itself why not! Gotta take care of yourself too, ya know!? Don’t let these haters pull you down, you do you!

    • I hear you! Milan is almost 3.5 and it is NO JOKE. This age is so amazing yet exhausting at the same time. LOL For me, it’s nice to put on a sexy outfit to feel somewhat human again. Mom life is no joke and hard AF so we need to do whatever we can do to feel alive and happy! 🙂

  14. Well said. No one deserves this type nor any other attack.

    You look great. You are definitely a well dressed and very lovely, sexy woman.

  15. You are beautiful girl and I agree, too many women are put down and made to feel less. Or try to become something that someone else wants us to be. It is up to all of us women to build each other up and support each other. Live your best life 💕 and BTW your little Milan is adorable. You’re being a great role model for her.

    • Thank you Diana! I have never been happier! I couldn’t agree more about how it’s up to all of us women to build each other up. It’s hard enough being a woman! Thank you for being kind and understanding. I really appreciate it. Haha Milan – she is my world! So blessed to have her in my life. 🙂

  16. I am so happy for you that you are choosing to be and dress the way you wish to at this time and not let mean and unkind people get to you. You are beautiful. Body shaming is terrible. Keep doing you, sweet one. Hugs ~ Janis from Florida

    • Hi Janis! Body-shaming is AWFUL and it just saddens me that women do this to one another. So easy for the person behind the screen to judge….

      It feels freaking amazing to do and wear what I want without anyone controlling me. I will definitely never allow that to happen again! Thank you for supporting me along this journey. XO

  17. Please don’t let others define who you are or want to grow to be with the negative comments. You’re a beautiful young women, raising a daughter how you feel is best and that’s what’s important. Don’t allow jealousy on the part of negative individuals to ruin the progress you’ve made to become this strong, independent woman we see everyday. 💞

    • Thank you so much Betty! I will never allow anyone else to define who I am. It feels so good to find myself and my strength again. I really appreciate your support – means so much. XO

  18. Amen, sister! Milan is so lucky to have a fierce, confident, beautiful, sexy, smart woman for a role model. No matter what she’s wearing. xo.

  19. Please ignore the negativity! You look amazing and you absolutely should wear whatever makes you happy! By th way, if I looked as good as you I probably would wear those hot outfits to the grocery store! 😉
    Also, I hope this isn’t too personal but I know that you’ve mentioned how you were in a pretty awful relationship for many years. Was there something specific that made you get out of it when you did or did you just gradually realize it wasn’t right for you? And did you know the whole time that the relationship wasn’t working or did you just all of a sudden realize it one day? I understand that this is no ones business and that you may not want to talk about it. I also wanted to say thank you for sharing the bit and pieces you have. You have no idea what a huge help and inspiration you have been. Thank you!

    • Hi Jen! LOL about the grocery store..too funny. Thank you for your kind words. I haven’t discussed the details of my situation only because I want to protect my daughter. However I will tell you that it was a combination of narcissism, infidelity and verbal/emotional/mental abuse. It’s been a long journey for me…the hardest thing I have had to overcome or endure. Luckily I was able to pull myself out of the hell and find happiness again. XOXO

  20. I think you are beautiful and looking great in your outfit choices! Great picks! Don’t pay attention to the naysayers- they’re jealous and obviously self-lothing who need a hobby of “mind your business”. Keep doing you girlfriend and Keep Shining!

    • Hehehe Thank you Joanna! I really appreciate you! I wish people would just be kind. So easy to be mean when they can’t show their face. Sigh…

  21. I rarely bother to leave comments but this post – the fact that you had to write it just infuriates me. It’s so easy for small, sad, lonely people to try to bring other people down in an effort to try to bring themselves up. Too bad those people will likely never understand that it never works – it will just bring both parties down.

    I absolutely love that you are teaching your daughter self confidence, poise and pride.

    But in more serious problems, is there a way for your website to not have the “sign up” pop up when I followed a link from the email that I had already subscribed to?? 😉

    • Hi Jen! Thank you for taking the time to comment. It infuriates me too! OMG. I know that it just comes with the territory but I don’t understand how women can do this to other women. It’s insane.

      Oh no about the pop up! Let me get my website people to take a look at it…hopefully we can fix it so it’s not annoying. LOL 🙂

  22. You are a strong, intelligent, beautiful women and I applaud you for the way you stood up for your self in your post. Anyone who shames you or anyone else for who they are, are not worth your time to worry about. Keep being true to yourself and don’t look back

    • Hi Rebecca! Aw thank you SO SO much for this. I really appreciate it and it means a lot. I just have no tolerance for people who shame others. It’s just ridiculous and I wish they would just unfollow instead of being so cruel. XO

  23. You look so gorgeous Annie! If you have it flaunt it! Comparison is the thief of joy and I read on another blogger’s feed recently that if someone’s posts make you feel negative, jealous, etc then you have the choice to mute or unfollow. Life is too short to be anything but happy and happiness is a choice and a mindset.

    Xo,

    Jess

    • Aw thank you Jess! You are 100% right! Life is TOO short for all this nonsense. Love what you said – happiness is a mindset and I firmly believe this. It’s definitely helped me through my healing process each day. Love you so much Jess! XO

  24. You are beautiful. While I am a bit older than you…quite a bit… I have followed you for many years, have purchased numerous items based on your recommendations and have always been more than satisfied. I’m appalled that you have to tolerate such negative and hurtful feedback when the the simple solution would be to just unfollow, and say nothing. Women need to be nurtured and supported, especially when they are brave enough to share the heartache you have been through. You wear these styles with class and sophistication. Embrace your beauty, both inside and out. And focus on the support system from those who love you.

    • Hi Cindy! You are amazing! Thank you for all the kind words. You’d think after all these years of blogging, I would be immune to the crazy comments or messages but it still boggles my mind how people can be so cruel! Makes me sad that women feel the need to put down other women. Thank goodness for women like you who GET IT! So thank you! XOXO 🙂

  25. Beautiful outfit. I love the purse. I knew what all the outfits were for and what occasion the outfits were to be worn. The outfits you put together look so great. I’m an older lady in my fifties and petite. I get some helpful ideas from you. Yes, some of the outfits I can’t wear, but, if I were in my 20’s or 30’s I would be wearing them! I think you’re very cute and I so enjoy your blog. Continue to be positive confident in yourself 🙂

    • Hi Susan! OMG thank you for saying that. I don’t know why others would think I would wear the going out outfits on a normal day with my daughter. Goodness gracious! I appreciate your support – means a lot. 🙂

  26. You are such an inspiration! To be able to raise your daughter alone and have so much confidence, that’s just amazing. Don’t let the negative people get you down, they’re just jealous. I love you style. With love and respect! What is you height by the way?

    • Hi Joy! Aw thank you so much for your kind words:) Raising a child by myself is NO JOKE. Much harder than I could ever imagine. Thank you for being so sweet – means a lot. BTW – I’m just under 5′ but always round up..LOL!

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  28. You go girl! I thought personal style blogs were supposed to be about PERSONAL style. Not what other people think they should be wearing. You are smoking hot in this dress and you have every right to show it off. You can show it off when you go shopping with your daughter. It can teach her the important lesson that nobody has a right to judge or harass you because of how you are dressed. People who don’t like how you dress have the power not to look at you. That’s the best lesson she can learn.

    I’ll be these comments are born of envy. I am a super-petite, but I am also voluptuous. I am all boobs and butt and belly. A dress like this would make me look like a lumpy mess. I admit I feel moments of extreme envy at your figure. But it’s YOUR figure. Not mine. We all work with what nature gave us. I accept that. I think there are women out there who are built like me and take their body insecurities out on you.

  29. You look great, always have, and I love the way you dress. Your style is an inspiration to me to take my own love of fashion to the next level.
    Clothes and fashion are wonderful. Have fun. There is certainly nothing wrong with dressing well and looking good. How odd that there are people who criticize this beautiful trait instead of celebrating one of the wonderful things that can be enjoyed in life to increase happiness.
    God bless,
    Irene

  30. I still don’t understand why anyone would even bring up your daughter. Still amazing that we can’t find a way to bring each up and not down . As women, we go through so much, so let’s just love each other. Love, Love you. U GO GIRL. Continue looking and feeling great. To HELL WITH HATERS. Shake haters off.

  31. If anyone can’t appreciate your loveliness, that’s THEIR problem, not yours. I think you look fabulous here. You have always looked fabulous in your outfits, even if there are some outfits I didn’t entirely like. This is from me speaking of following your blogging work for more than five years. I love your dress and sandals here. Sweet smile and hairstyle as always.