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Marquita Pring’s Journey to Loving Her Stretch Marks

The SI Swimsuit model used to feel shame because people weren't talking about this natural occurrence.

SI Swimsuit model Marquita Pring is someone who seems to ooze confidence and self-love out of every pore on her body, but it wasn’t always rainbows and butterflies for her. Pring can remember being insecure about her stretch marks since she was just a young child. “I’d say I was around 10 or 11 when I started to notice them on my arms, on my belly, on my back and just feeling horrified because I had no idea what that was,” she recalls. Naturally, she looked outside of herself for the validation that would tell her that those stretch marks were completely natural but found nothing to ease her suffering. “It wasn’t happening to my friends but it was happening to me,” she says. “No one was talking about it. It's just like this thing I had to deal with and hide.”

Beauty is defined by each individual internally, not by any outside gaze. “It has nothing to do with being big—it's a human thing…Now I definitely love my stretch marks. I have no shame in showing them. It's me, it's part of me. If you have an issue with that, then I don’t need you in my life - it doesn’t matter to me.” Pring is not alone with her acceptance: many SI Swimsuit models have found power by embracing and sharing their stretch marks.

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We all have parts of our bodies that may have taken more effort to learn to love. “It’s me. It’s part of me,.” says Pring, who will be back for the 2022 Swimsuit Issue and we can’t wait.