SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) – You may have seen the selfies on Facebook or Instagram: women wearing swimsuits with the hashtag #fatkini. The social media movement isn’t more online shaming, but instead a push for empowerment.

“Fat girls are told that we’re not supposed to wear bathing suits, that we’re supposed to cover up and wear as much clothing as possible,” said Virgie Tovar, a Bay Area fat-discrimination lecturer. She told KPIX 5 the #Fatkini movement has become a way to help women feel good about their bodies.

Two years ago, fashion plus-sized blogger Gabi Fresh coined the term on her blog, telling women of all sizes to “find something that makes you feel gorgeous.”

The message is acceptance for all people with any body type.

“I think we’ve hit this tipping point where I feel like people are done. There’s only so much shame and self-loathing that one human being can handle,” said Tovar. “The Fatkini is this movement toward refusing to do that saying, ‘I’m alive right now. I can wear this bathing suit right now and look good.’”

People who talked to KPIX 5 said it’s a great idea.

“I think it’s awesome,” said Sarah Roccaforte of Vacaville. “I think everyone should embrace who they are and everyone is different.”

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