Florence Pugh thinks people are frightened of her being “comfortable and happy” in her own skin.
The ‘Midsommar’ actress, 27, made the claim while hitting out at so-called body shamers she said thrive on “keeping women down” by “commenting on their bodies” as part of a tactic to control females that she feels has “worked for a very long time”.
Florence – who made headlines in 2022 for wearing a sheer pink gown through which her nipples were visible to a Valentino fashion show – told the October issue of ELLE UK: “I think the scariest things for me are the instances where people have been upset that I’ve shown ‘too much’ of myself.
“When everything went down with the Valentino pink dress a year ago, my nipples were on display through a piece of fabric, and it really wound people up.
“It’s the freedom that people are scared of, the fact I’m comfortable and happy. Keeping women down by commenting on their bodies has worked for a very long time.
“I think we’re in this swing now where lots of people are saying, ‘I don’t give a s***’.
“Unfortunately, we’ve become so terrified of the human body that we can’t even look at my two little cute nipples behind fabric in a way that isn’t sexual.”
Florence added she’s not afraid to show cellulite on her thigh or “squidge in between my arm and my boob” and would instead prefer to “lay it all out” over hiding herself away.
And she declared society needs constantly reminded that there is “more than one reason for women’s bodies (to exist)”.
Florence went on about having a bold fashion sense from childhood: “When I was a teenager I would buy the most outrageous things and sew them together. I’ve always loved colour.”
She added about her initial struggle with dressing for premieres and awards shows: “When I first started doing red carpets, it was really tough. It takes ages to feel comfortable with 50 men all shouting ‘Picture, over here!’
“I’ve become more confident in the last few years, and I think that’s hugely linked to the clothes I’ve been wearing.
“The more you can enjoy it, the more (people) can see that you’re enjoying it… having people that can take the piss out of me around me keeps me very real.
“Knowing who I am, and who I’ve been from the very beginning, has allowed me to feel safe. There’s no grand reveal – it’s just me. Even in my style, I never wanted there to be a filter.”
The actress has previously faced trolling over the 21-year age gap between her and her ‘Scrubs’ star ex-boyfriend Zach Braff, 48, from whom she split in early 2022 after three years with the actor and director.
Florence is receiving the British Icon award at the ELLE Style Awards 2023, held in partnership with Tiffany and Co, on 5 September.
Read her full Elle UK interview at https://www.elle.com/uk/FlorencePugh