All her life, Jazzmyne Robbins felt she had to cover up at the beach, concealing her curves in one-pieces or high-waisted swimsuits — until now.
The 25-year-old is determined to bust the myth that bikinis are only for skinny women. Her first step was to put on a bikini for the very first time and hit the beach. Robbins, whose story has since gone viral, told TODAY Style the experience was liberating and long overdue.
"It felt really good," she said. "It felt like I finally wasn't doing anything wrong."
Robbins, a video producer for Buzzfeed in Los Angeles, filmed the process with producer Daysha Edewi for the website and the video has now been viewed nearly a million times on YouTube.
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In the video, Robbins talks about growing up around friends who were “super thin and super blond and super white,” and struggling to accept her own body.
Her adventures in finding a bikini — she settled on a black string two-piece from model Ashley Graham’s line — started as a colleague’s project to encourage body positivity. Robbins signed on once she realized she could help, while also facing her own fears.
"It's not something I would have done on my own," she said. "But I thought, I can't be the only one feeling this way.
"Honestly, I was so anxious about it all week, but by the time I got to do it, I was like, whatever, I'm just going to do this," Robbins added.
She hopes her story encourages other women to brave the beach in whatever swimsuit they want.
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"There's this huge pressure right now to have a beach body or a bikini body," Robbins said. "But the biggest thing for me is [to convey] that everyone is acceptable no matter what. No matter your size, shape, skin tone — anything. You can go to the beach and you can feel confident and beautiful and sexy just the way you are. There's not a certain swimsuit for your body type."
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With beach season in full swing, she's not the only one encouraging women to ditch their worries and slip into a swimsuit. Author Jennifer Weiner recently posted a swimsuit selfie and encouraged her fans to do the same, proving that summer fun isn't reserved for people with a certain body type.