Comments can get weird on social media, but body shaming Jorja Smith takes the biscuit for this weekend’s episode of ‘people say weird things on the internet’. The award-winning, Grammy-nominated singer/songwriter from Walsall, Jorja Smith, might be best known for her distinctive and angelic vocals, but lately all people seem to be focused on is whether she’s either pregnant or simply gaining weight.
The internet has been hellbent on policing celebrities’ weight forever – and Jorja herself has been a prime target for a while. The 25-year-old has always rocked her naturally curvy body proudly, but more and more people have had something to say about it.
This conversation came to the surface this weekend, after videos of her performing in Paris in front of a sold-out crowd – a 40,000-people-deep arena – with Grammy Award winning artist Burna Boy, surfaced.
“[Wait] a minute is my girl jorja expecting???…” says one user on one of the viral clips of the performance on Instagram. Another user responded with “No, she’s just eating to much”. Amongst this rudely presumptuous comment, there were a slew of the comments like: “Nah she just fat” and the comments sections on Instagram, Twitter and TikTok posts are inundated with a copious amount of derogatory and hurtful statements around Jorja Smith’s weight and body shape.
The ‘Be Honest’ singer has spoken about this in the past, revealing to Adowa Aboah for an Elle Magazine interview back in 2019 that she used to read comments about her weight gain but she had to stop. “I don’t really read the comments,” she told Adowa. “One thing that used to happen was, because my tummy’s not flat, if I wear tight things, it sticks out a bit.” says Jorja. “People comment: ‘She looks pregnant.’ People think that, because I have loads of followers, I don’t see things online.”
It’s easy to say, ‘Oh she’s rich and she’s a celebrity, she’ll be fine’. But ultimately she’s still a human being, who uses social media and gets hurt by people’s ill-mannered opinions. In fact, she has admitted that it took her years to get to grips with her body and her look, as from a young age she’s felt shamed for it.
“In school, all my friends were white. All my friends were skinny. I wanted to be skinny. I ran so hard and didn’t eat that much because I wanted to fit in. But now I’ve finally realised that you are you for a reason. You look like you, cuz you do, you can’t look like anyone else.” says the singer on a BBC1XTRA Interview.
In today’s age of social media and constant scrutiny, it’s very disheartening to still be witness to the unfair treatment women often face when it comes to body image. Not only does it affect them personally, but it’s a direct mirror to how society treats women-alike. There are millions of young women across the world with bodies like Jorja’s, so naturally, this affects them too.