Fat bodies are made for water. We float serenely through even the harshest of waves, and the buoyancy takes any undue stress off of our strong legs and joints. The cool water is a relief against the discomfort of summer heat. So why do so many of us have an aversion to the beach and other places where we can swim?
We’re constantly told that our big bodies are not welcome in those spaces, that our bellies and strong thighs are not allowed to be in the same places of comfort and leisure because they do not fit the aesthetic that so much of the world is striving for. Despite the fact that our bodies actually make us better conditioned for the water than many, fatphobes try to tell us that we’re not supposed to be part of the picture.
To hell with it.
If you have ever felt pushed out of swimming spaces, all you need to do is look at these beautiful merbabes to know that we belong there just as much if not more. Gather a bit of inspiration for your next aquatic outing, costume party, or simply for feeling beautifully feminine. Don’t dig swimming? You don’t need to be near water to channel these gorgeous mer-vibes and create a unique look of your own.
Check out these 17 Plus-Size Merbabes!
1. Leathia Miller via PudgePDX (@pewpewzapzap)
Leathia Miller is peak merbabe in this beautiful Sauvie Island shoot for PudgePDX.
2. Moonbow Brite (@moonbowbrite)
Los Angeles-based plus-size burlesque dancer Moonbow Brite shows off her beautiful siren look in this shoot.
3. Rainbow Chatman (@rainbowchatman)
Makeup artist and plus-size model Rainbow Chatman’s gorgeous lavender look is evocative of a beautiful mermaid. Check out her IG for amazing colorful makeup and fashion inspiration!
4. Saucye West (@saucyewest)
Bay area plus-size model Saucye West shows up in her golden best as a beautiful black mermaid.
5. Clarity The Mermaid (@mermaidclarity)
This So-Cal mer-former, Mermaid Clarity, floats gently in a pool.
6. Sam Rowswell (@fattyboomtatty)
UK babe Sam Rowswell reminds everyone that “Mermaids Don’t Have Thigh Gaps.”
7. Sassy Latte (@sassy_latte)
Makeup artist Sassy Latte channels some gorgeous sparkly mervibes with this beautiful look. Not into purple? Try switching it out for fuschia, teal, or blue as your primary to switch it up.
8. Luckie of The Sacramento Mermaids (@luckieherself)
Luckie of The Sacramento Mermaids splashes in a tank while practicing for a performance.
9. Cherry Tart (@cherry_tartz)
Pacific Northwestern burlesque performer Cherry Tart transcends all of the bullshit in this absolutely gorgeous mermaid dress.
10. Gabriella Lascano (@gabriellalascano)
Gorgeous Gabriella Lascano takes a mermaid-like sequin dress and turns it into a sophisticated modern club queen look.
11. Roz The Diva (@rozthediva)
Professional size-inclusive pole dance instructor Roz The Diva admires herself in a hot pink mermaid tail during her trip to Hawaii.
12. Ylluria Watersong (@ylluria)
Portland-based professional mermaid Ylluria lounges beneath a parasol at a gig. Creator of the #MermaidSignProject, Ylluria helps teach children sign language as an educational tool for empowerment.
13. Katie Rose (@katierosebee)
Katie Rose shows off her amazing handmade mermaid costume.
14. Hayley Michelle (@baethefae)
Hayley Michelle channels some serious Ariel vibes as she enjoys the rain while out by the water.
15. Nicole Youngblood (@youngbloodaesthetics)
Nicole Youngblood channels a mermaid vibe through her beautiful hair color and makeup.
16. Jesika (@chubtastic_fashion)
Who says you’ve got to have a tail to be a mermaid? Jesika channels some mer-whimsy in this adorable onesie.
17. The Rural Mermaid (@theruralmermaid)
If you’ve ever needed a bit of vacation goals, this shot of The Rural Mermaid will make you want to splash around amidst waterfalls for days.