Walking the Marlies Dekkers lingerie show – why it’s so important to love yourself

Gabrielle Koster

Love is the great miracle cure. Loving ourselves works miracles in our lives.’ – Louise Hay.

How often have you had negative thoughts about yourself? I for one have had plenty. Thoughts like: ‘I’m not good enough. I suck at life. I’m ugly. My body isn’t pretty.’ There have been so many times where I was feeling insecure, for example about my body.

So when Marlies Dekkers (you know, queen of Dutch lingerie) asked me to walk the runway for her in her new collection (together with my two ladies Linsey and Nathalie) my response was: hell no. Wearing lingerie or a bathing suit, in public? Where people are intentionally staring at me? And where people are taking my picture? I don’t think so. Nuh-uh.

But then Marlies told me that this collection was inspired by feminist and artist Frida Kahlo and had an important message. With this show, she wanted to challenge all women to confidently face their insecurities and chase their goals. Dare to dream, dare to grow, dare to be. So that got me thinking: if I don’t dare to do this because I’m insecure about my body, than it might be a great idea to do it. Let’s face those insecurities!

Before I knew it, I was walking up and down the runway of the Marlies Dekkers s/s 2018 fashion show – together with Linsey, Nathalie, a group of Dutch bloggers (Imre Cecen, Esmee Trouw, Danique van Grevenbroek and Felicia Jones) and a group of incredibly good dancers. I walked up and down that runway eight times, to be precise. Eight times! Wearing nothing but a bathing suit, a bikini or lingerie in front of a fully clothed audience. For some reason, my mind accepted the whole ‘face your fears and go!’-mind set and I couldn’t be bothered by everybody staring at me. There I was, showing my body in all its glory (and with glory I mean those darn love handles I often dislike and my cellulite) to everyone in the room and on the Instagram live stream of Marlies Dekkers. I conquered my fear, ignored those ‘what will everybody think of me?’-thoughts and really showed everyone my ‘perfect imperfections’. Of course it was incredibly exciting and scary. I had never walked a runway before! Especially not dressed in so little clothes! I was really nervous.

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What also helped: a couple of minutes before walking that catwalk I remembered a quote saying ‘Mother Theresa didn’t walk around complaining about her thighs. She had shit to do‘. And at that moment I really felt like that: my body is more than just the way it looks. I really wasn’t designed to be just pretty. And it made me realize that I’m so thankful for the strength of my body and the genius way it works.

I think it’s important that we teach all the girls on this planet that a body is more than just the way it looks.



Let’s celebrate our bodies. Let’s love ourselves for who we are. So here’s to all the girls out there reading this: you are so beautiful. And also so much more than that. Don’t ever forget that. I conquered my insecurity (never ever will I be bothered to walk around in my bikini on the beach anymore), will you face yours?

And thank you Marlies, for spreading this important message.