Vanessa Williams Praises Stars Speaking Out About Body Image Issues: 'It Makes Us Human' (EXCLUSIVE VIDEO)
Body image has been a hot topic in Hollywood in recent weeks.
From Katie Couric confessing her eating disorder struggles, to Lady Gaga revealing her battle with bulimia and anorexia -- and Christina Aguilera embracing her full-bodied curves -- many celebrities are stepping into the spotlight with their weight woes.
And it's not just fans who are applauding their courageous candor.
666 Park Avenue star Vanessa Williams has nothing but praise for her fellow female entertainers.
"I think revealing your own likes, dislikes and insecurities helps because it makes us human," the actress told Celebuzz in an exclusive interview. "For people that view celebrities in a separate way, they can also see a commonality between us."
Does Williams struggle with her own waistline?
"It takes work to stay in shape," the Emmy-nominated actress, 49, admitted. "There are some shortcuts, but they’re not long-lasting shortcuts."
But Williams, who spent must of her career as a chart-topping singer, has found one hobby helps her keep off the pounds.
"Dancing is a big part of my life, [and] I think it helps," she said.
"I always love to stay physically fit. So body image is something that, you’re constantly in front of the mirror, and viewing yourself, but it’s also part of the artistry. So when you can use your body as part of the art, it’s dual purpose: you want to stay in shape, but you also want to be in good shape to be able to be a good artist."
And dance is a passion she shares with her daughters — Jillian, Gabriella, and Melanie. "Luckily, all my daughters have been great dancers, really physically fit and that’s part of their being," Williams explained.
"It's not just, let me diet to look good in clothes. It's I want to look the best that I can because this is my art."
But Williams — who's seen much success on TV shows such as Desperate Housewives and Ugly Betty — finds self image more daunting when you're on screen.
"The unfortunate thing about being on camera…[is] you’re always viewing yourself," she said.
"I think you’re much more brutal in terms of film and television when you see yourself blown up to huge proportions and you have everybody commenting on the way you look."
While acknowledging it's a "tough business," Williams knows it's just a downside of the job description. "We chose to be in the business," she said. "We chose to be in front of the camera and that's just part of what we do."
What do you think of Williams' opinion on Hollywood body image? Sound off in comments.