Girls creator, writer and former star Lena Dunham is truly a triple threat when it comes to showbiz. After the former HBO series concluded in 2017, the New York City native landed multiple roles in films such as Once Upon a Time … in Hollywood and on other TV shows, including American Horror Story: Cult. While she is sometimes busy with her career, Lena is also an outspoken advocate for body-positivity and its evolution. And she occasionally shares bikini and swimsuit pictures via Instagram to promote self-love

“This is a moment of gratitude — not for the sun (although it sure is sweet after all this London rain, and I thought rain was my thing…),” Lena captioned an Instagram carousel post in July 2021, featuring photos of her wearing a red and white heart patterned one-piece. “And not for this new bathing suit, (although it’s pretty exciting when something is both covered in hearts AND accommodates the ample belly). No, this is gratitude for YOU. It’s easy to go down the rabbit hole, yelling about how the internet is mean and false and destroying our social fabric yadda, yadda, yadda, but this community, right here on the ‘gram, has been so consistently loving, kind and connected for such a long time.”

Despite her optimistic statements, Lena got candid in a separate social media post about weight loss and the COVID-19 pandemic while sharing a photo of herself wearing a black bikini.

“Oh hey, just self-isolating with my pod, a.k.a. my pot belly and my sunglasses,” she wrote via Instagram in December 2020. “You know, I’ve been thinking a lot about my pot belly in quarantine — especially as I notice an unusual amount of articles with titles like ‘How I lost the weight’ and ‘Diet is everything.’ Are there more of them or do I just have more time to notice? Somehow, headlines that used to roll off my flesh rolls sting in a new way, not because I think that’s the body I’m meant to have, but because it feels like it’s adding yet another item to the epic to-do list we are all creating for ourselves in COVID. You know, the one: “Now that I can’t be in the world, maybe I’ll finally … take up karate, build my own furniture, grow geraniums …’ But for most people, pandemic life has not proven to be a break from the world or themselves.”

She then reflected on the criticism she faced “growing up chubby, fat, thicc, whatever you wanna call it.”

“I always felt my body was a sign that read, ‘I’m lazy, and I have done less,’” she continued. “Like, if I just found the will to invest 30 percent more, I could be OK. Over the years, as my body guided me through my career and illness and disability, I started to appreciate what it was capable of. But somehow, this pandemic time has brought back some of those old feelings of self-loathing, and I think it all comes back to that damned to-do list, the one that started when we went into lockdown.”

While she opened the conversation to her Instagram followers, the HBO alum also noted she would still “be reading faithfully right here in this bikini top” at the end of her caption.

Lena’s heartfelt note encouraged others to flood the comments section to share their perspectives on the subject, many ultimately agreeing with her on the pressuring societal beauty and body standards.

Scroll down to see Lena’s bikini and swimsuit photos! 


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Tyler Cowan