Terms for fat
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Plus size advice
Which is the most ‘correct term’ to use: Curvy, Plus size, or Fat? I thought curvy was in reference to the Jessica Rabbit, hourglass, big-small-big body type?

Also, I thought that the word fat had lost its “negative” connotations? I think a discussion on ‘labels’ and ‘names’ would be a good start.



G’day Tresume, Great question! Okay lets get right to it and cut the fat.

I have a lot of friends who freak out and  laugh when I use the word ‘fat’ to describe myself. They almost think I shouldn’t be saying it as I’m putting myself down and it shocks them. Personally, I don’t see it as a negative or insult because for me its just a fact.  I’m overweight, I’m fat. I know it. If someone uses the word ‘fat’ toward me as an insult it has no sting in its tail at all. “Duh, tell me something I don’t know. Dumb ass!” Note: I didn’t say ‘fat ass’ LOL

However other people feel differently when describing themselves and would never use the word ‘fat’ so I think it’s important to be mindful of that too. I’m also a fan of using ‘plus size’ when it comes to fashion and ‘big girl’ too but for some ‘big girl’ is condescending so really can anyone win on this issue?  I’ve been flat out asked what is the correct term for fat? To me it is ‘fat’ but I know a woman who was clearly plus size but didn’t like being called that. To that I say her body and her decision on what she likes being called. Honestly this is all about personal preference. Again, I think plus size is a respectful term and I wholeheartedly embrace it as has the fashion industry.

What do you do when referring to other women? Girlfriend, I’d err on the side of caution for sure as you don’t know how that person will feel.  Call someone fat and you might end up with a black eye or at the very least a serious side eye. In my book the most complimentary and inoffensive word you can use is ‘curvy.’   It’s seen as the ‘nicer’ and ‘gentler’ and overall a fun overarching term to use, however there’s debate of fat/overweight people taking over the word ‘curvy’ leaving those ‘Jessica Rabbit,’ ‘Marilyn Monroe’ and that chick out of Mad Men shaped girls nowhere to go. A lot of them don’t want to be lumped in the same category as someone like me or Rebel Wilson. Personally as an overweight person I consider myself to be in the fat category and not curvy. I understand your dilemma on which is the correct term for fat and which word to use.

So I guess when referring to others the PC or most inoffensive term to use is ‘curvy’ but in identifying and refering to yourself choose whatever the bloody word you like most love! Some like; fluffy, full figured, plump, queen sized.  Once you hear how a woman refers to herself you’ll know what she likes.

~Kelly (fat, big girl, plus size) xoxox

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About Kelly Glover (324 Articles)
Kelly Glover is an Australian living in Los Angeles and created this plus size fashion blog as a place for curvy women to get info and advice on plus size dating, celebrity and fitness. contact@bigcurvylove.com


  1. Yes! Fantastic points! I agree wholeheartedly.

  2. I’d like to touch on tresume’s comment about labels – why do we have to be “plus size” or even “curvy” or “fat.” Who says we are any of that!? Why do we need to be labeled? Anyway, that’s probably for a larger discussion and not just the comments portion. Also, this post reminded my of my very favorite quote/mantra: “No one can hurt me. They are just giving me their observation. I am giving it meaning.”

  3. This is always an interesting one, ruffles so many feathers, lol. Honestly, fat, skinny, muscular, tall, short…they are all just adjectives, words used for describing. I agree there is a lot of mixed feelings on this one and while using the word fat to describe myself doesn’t bother me it really seems to freak out the ‘unfat’, lol. So I usually defer to using the word chubby when describing myself to others and yes sometimes we do need to use those lovely adjectives (why people insist these are our label I don’t know because they are not, it’s an adjective folks). For instance when I’m meeting up with someone I’ve never met I need them to know what I look like so I usually say something like, “I’m the cute chubby girl with short {insert color at the moment} hair”. But whoa, if I say fat I get this whole “Oh honey, I’m sure your not fat…” to which I usually laugh and reply yeah I am. Anyhew, there is my input on the topic. Peace, tlo

  4. I love your answer. I never want to say the wrong thing be it skinny or not <— see I couldn't even say the F word fat there.

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