As someone who has been loyal to Instagram since it was first launched, I have seen a seismic shift in the way people use the photo-sharing platform. Launched in 2010, Instagram was a hub of grainy pictures of food, faces and fun. But in just seven years it has transformed into a complicated, commercially driven social media site in which ordinary people have managed to launch hugely profitable careers.
Authentic uploads are no longer valued by the ruthless algorithm, which controversially leaves a lot of users in the dark. It’s less about the originality and message behind your work and more about aesthetics, which is something that Instagram model, Natalia Lozano learned the hard way. The Spanish star was famous in her home country – and around the world – for her honest snapshots, in which she promoted body positivity by embracing her curves. A self-proclaimed feminist, Natalia’s mission was to spread the message of self-love across people’s timelines, which have for a long time now been saturated with skinny models flaunting their thigh gaps in a tropical paradise. Her upfront and open snaps had garnered the young model a highly-coveted 150,000 followers, whom she loyally included in her self-love journey. However, rather than applaud her for this achievement, Instagram appears to be punishing her after the page was removed from the site just a few days into the New Year. Rather than sit idly by and accept Instagram’s decision, Natalia chose to fight back. Creating a new account – under the same name – she hit back at the app, which is owned by Facebook. “[Instagram] decides that what is left out,” she typed angrily to the 17,000 followers who have followed her to her new account, before going on to say how posts that aren’t “socially established as ‘correct’” are removed. “ENOUGH ALREADY fuck. My last photo of 2017 with some of my favorite works, in which I invest time, desire, people and great enthusiasm,” she raged, referencing the photo which prompted Instagram to take action. “Natcurvylicious is not an Instagram account with followers. It is a personal struggle, a challenge, a perseverance, an effort, it is a job, it is a cry of courage, a way of life. Natcurvylicious is Natalia and really … losing her would mean a very hard blow,” she continued to write, pleading for Instagram to reconsider their rash decision and reinstate her original account. “[It is] a profile that I do not have now because society has decided that my body is not valid to be taught. That being fat, proclaiming it and enjoying it … is not valid for this social network,” she continued, before going on to list accounts that Instagram ignores such as those who use “violence”, “false” accounts, “accounts of men who harass sexually” and the accounts of “thin” women who pose provocatively. “The woman [is] an object of consumption,” she added, before going on to say how a “fat woman” is an exception to this because they give a “bad image.”
Evidently frustrated with the situation and people’s perception of bigger bodies, Natalia went on to beg: “I ask 2018 to stop hating … that you are a little at peace with yourselves … your light, even if you do not believe it shines … it shines bright and you do not need to turn anyone off for it … you are going to be much happier.” Highlighting why this is so important, the Instagram star went on to detail two incidents in which women had approached her for help.
“Two women have written to me today. One of them asked me for advice because her head of personal image practices does not want me to work in her company if she does not go on a diet. Another told me that she did a work test that came out incredible, said by the supervisor, but did not give the profile for his physique. What’s going on? WHAT’S GOING ON?” “We are many, many who work to change this situation,” Natalia went on to write on her account. “Society does not open its eyes. And not only that, but try to silence those of us who give our faces and dare, in any way. Naked, dressed or as we get out of our holy p*ssy! And only together can we change all this.” As Natalia’s post went viral around the photo-sharing site, her follower began to once again rise. Clearly humbled by people’s positivity and support, she thanked those who have helped to build her back up. “I really wanted to thank you for all the support I am receiving. I do not understand why people need to hurt others for their satisfaction, I do not understand hate, I do not understand envy and I do not understand empty minds.”
We hope that Natalia has her original account reinstated soon, and if she doesn’t it seems as though her new page has the potential to be even better than the first!