Remember the outrage to Florence Pugh's sheer pink Valentino dress? Here's what she has to say about it now

florence pugh attends the valentino haute couture show in sheer pink valentino dress
Florence on the backlash to her sheer dressVittorio Zunino Celotto - Getty Images

Florence Pugh needs no introduction as one of our finest actors, who has as much personality as she does talent. But unfortunately, it's been her body and outfit choices that have often been the focus of controversy and speculation. Thankfully, refusing to be brought down by the backlash to that sheer pink Valentino dress she wore last year (all because her nipples were visible), Pugh wore another sheer gown by the same designer at Paris Fashion week in July, this time blue (which we also loved).

Now, reflecting on the reaction she received the first time she 'freed the nipple' (she was publicly dragged, received derogatory comments, you name it), the Oppenheimer star believes it was unfortunately born from people becoming "terrified of the human body", especially a female one. Of course in true Pugh style, she is determined not to pander to this.

"I speak the way I do about my body because I’m not trying to hide the cellulite on my thigh or the squidge in between my arm and my boob: I would much rather lay it all out," she told ELLE in a new interview.

florence pugh attends the valentino haute couture show 2023 in sheer blue valentino dress
Marc Piasecki - Getty Images

"I think the scariest thing 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."

At the time (last July), Pugh wrote on Instagram: "What’s been interesting to watch and witness is just how easy it is for men to totally destroy a woman’s body, publicly, proudly, for everyone to see. You even do it with your job titles and work emails in your bio..?"

But now she's come to understand the sad reason behind this. "It’s the freedom that people are scared of; the fact I’m comfortable and happy," she told ELLE. "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 sh*t.'

"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. We need to keep reminding everybody that there is more than one reason for women’s bodies [to exist]."

And it seems women have appreciated her self-expression through clothing more than men have. "When I wore the [sheer] dresses, every woman I walked past would say, 'You look like you’re having so much fun.' And I was!" she said, adding: "Women were drawn to the fact that I was completely happy. That’s been a massive aspect of my career and my life: accepting who I am, and not running away from it."

Well, we love who Florence is, and have certainly taken inspiration to be more ourselves too.

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