Actress Florence Pugh has hit back at critics who attacked her for wearing a sheer dress that showed her nipples at a recent Maison Valentino runway show in Italy.
The 26-year old UK-born star of Little Women took to Instagram to defend her choice of wearing the dress.
“Listen, I knew when I wore that incredible Valentino dress that there was no way there wouldn’t be a commentary on it,” she began. “Whether it be negative or positive, we all knew what we were doing.
Pugh pointed out “…how easy it is for men to totally destroy a woman’s body, publicly, proudly, for everyone to see.”
“It isn’t the first time and certainly won’t be the last time a woman will hear what’s wrong with her body by a crowd of strangers, what’s worrying is just how vulgar some of you men can be.”
The 2020 Academy award nominee said she had been excited to wear the dress, and that she was not nervous.
“I wasn’t before, during or even now after,” she explained.
“Thankfully, I’ve come to terms with the intricacies of my body that make me, me. I’m happy with all of the ‘flaws’ that I couldn’t bear to look at when I was 14.”
Explicitly addressing her critics, Pugh continued, saying “So many of you wanted to aggressively let me know how disappointed you were by my ‘tiny tits’, or how I should be embarrassed by being so ‘flat chested’.”
“I’ve lived in my body for a long time. I’m fully aware of my breast size and am not scared of it.”
“What’s more concerning is…. Why are you so scared of breasts? Small? Large? Left? Right? Only one? Maybe none? What. Is. So. Terrifying.”
Pugh ended her post by acknowledging the “very strong, powerful, curvy women,” she grew up surrounded by.
“We were raised to find power in the creases of our body. To be loud about being comfortable. It has always been my mission in this industry to say ‘fu** it and fu** that’ whenever anyone expects my body to morph into an opinion of what’s hot or sexually attractive.”
“If being loudly abusive towards women publicly in 2022 is so easy for you, then the answer is that it is you who doesn’t know. Grow up. Respect people. Respect bodies. Respect all women. Respect humans. Life will get a whole lot easier, I promise.”
Several high profile celebrities have come out in support of Pugh’s latest instagram post, including Bridgerton star, Regé-Jean Page.
“What. Is. So Terrifying?” he reiterated in an Instagram story.
“Take a look at yourself fellas. Then take a look at your mates and step up when it’s time to step up. When the boys are out of line, have a word.”
“The weird thing about misogyny is men actually listen to other men, so do your bit, cos [sic] the next few years in particular are gonna be a really good time to listen, and take some responsibility, for everyone’s sake.”
Pugh has historically starred in films with strong female leads, and stories that platform a woman’s experience of the world, including Little Women (2020), Black Widow (2021), Midsummer (2019) and Lady MacBeth (2016).
Image: Florence Pugh, Instagram