Loose Women launches Body Stories campaign with ‘powerful, joyful’ photo shoot

A special episode to mark International Women’s Day will air on Wednesday March 8.
A special episode to mark International Women’s Day will air on Wednesday March 8.

Loose Women panellists including Dame Kelly Holmes, Judi Love and Gloria Hunniford will share their own stories as part of the ITV show’s Body Stories campaign for International Women’s Day.

The group, which also includes Carol McGiffin, Katie Piper and Sophie Morgan, have taken part in a photo shoot celebrating their various body shapes in a bid to help viewers feel represented and body confident.

Marking the annual celebration, a Loose Women special will air on Wednesday March 8 “continuing the campaign’s pledge to lead the conversation on the issues affecting women’s body confidence today”.

Taiwan-born photographer Yolanda Y Liou has captured the panellists dressed in a variety of pastel hues.

Her previous work, often exploring body image and confidence, has been shown in the National Portrait Gallery, and was shortlisted for the Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize.

During the special, McGiffin will speak about living with breast cancer and undergoing a mastectomy, while Hunniford will discuss the need to see older women in the media and Love will speak about the importance of seeing different body types represented.

Disability campaigner Sophie Morgan will also share her story of body acceptance and how she has adapted to life with a disability.

Loose Women’s first Body Stories launched in 2017 with unedited pictures of the panellists, shot by singer and celebrity photographer Bryan Adams.

National Comedy Awards 2023 – London
Judi Love (Ian West/PA)

Since then, the campaign has tackled a range of topics, from photo editing to social media filters.

A Loose Women survey of 2,000 UK women over 18, conducted in February 2023, suggests six in 10 still do not think there is enough body diversity in the media.

Although almost half (42%) think representation has improved in the past five years, they agree there is still a long way to go.

Loose Women editor Sally Shelford said: “Loose Women’s Body Stories campaign was originally launched in 2017 to inspire and promote body confidence for all of our viewers.

“We are so proud that it is returning for International Women’s Day with a powerful, joyful shoot and an equally powerful message on the importance of celebrating and seeing body diversity.”

Photographer Liou said: “I feel really grateful to be part of creating this wonderful campaign, to celebrate all different body types.

“Working with these amazing women was such a joyful experience and whilst they all have very different stories, what they have in common is that they fully embrace who they are.

“The courage and energy of turning every obstacle into something glorious and the love of life that they share is truly inspirational.”

A campaign promo premiered on ITV1 on Tuesday evening with presenter and burns victims activist Piper heard saying: “Change doesn’t happen from one person, it happens from a group of people who have the same passion.”

Double-Olympic champion Dame Kelly adds: “For me it’s about being comfortable with who I am. We all deserve to live the life we want to live.”

The Loose Women Body Stories special airs on Wednesday March 8 at 12.30pm on ITV1 and ITVX.