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Is skinny always considered a compliment?

155 Answers
Last Updated: 09/13/2020 at 3:40am
Is skinny always considered a compliment?
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United States
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Melissa Hudson, MS Ed, PhD(c), LMFT

Marriage & Family Therapist

I work with clients of diverse backgrounds on a multitude of concerns. My approach is, at times, directive, yet always curious, nonjudgmental, collaborative, and validating.

Top Rated Answers
October 5th, 2019 6:29am
No. Your value is not based off the shape or size of your body, I feel as though it undermines many other amazing qualities of the personality you could be complimented on. Adding to this, being skinny does not always mean someone is healthy; thinness does not equate to fitness or wellness. We seem to live in a world where the media is constantly telling us that thin equals happy and that being skinny is the ultimate goal, but it creates a very toxic basis of health, and gives an artificial goal that people can potentially harm their health working towards an unachievable standard set by the media. We've had social medias ingrain into our minds that to be beautiful, you must be skinny, and this simply isn't true.
October 18th, 2019 12:38pm
No, actually I dont think it is. Because some people if they see themselves as fat, that could make them feel like you are lying, which then in turn can send them spiraling downwards trying to lose more weight. You should never in my opinion make a comment about someones weight you never really know who is going through what, nor how they think about their bodies. Skinny can be taken one of 2 ways. It may be taken as a compliment, or an insult. Again, just to be safe never make assumptions or comments about other peoples weight, you never know what they may be going through.
October 27th, 2019 3:27pm
It seems like the answer to this might vary based on the context and the person saying it. I have been called skinny for most of my life, and when I was young, it certainly felt as if it was intended to be a negative trait. It seemed that it was other's way of implying that I was not strong or masculine. But then it seemed to change into being a compliment. It is a rather ambiguous statement really. I have heard it used to be critical and used as a compliment. What is most important to me is to love myself exactly the way I am naturally and healthily. If this is in place, then it doesn't matter how other people mean it when they say it.
March 4th, 2020 8:02pm
Not really if you are talking with a sufferer of some eating disorder, specially anorexia. Actually you must be very careful about mentioning shape, weight or appearance to a patient with that condition. On second thoughts maybe is better if one refrains to comment about any physical feature of other people. I think in some cases victims of bullying might be specially sensitive regarding comments about shape, weight and appearance. Summarizing, "skinny" can not always be considered a compliment and sometimes if we are not careful could become a trigger or may not be well taken by others. My two cents.
March 8th, 2020 12:52pm
It depends. Some people will take it as a compliment but some of them may feel bad after hearing this. Usually when we saay ,,you're so skinny, i'm really jealous of it..." we don't want to upset anyone. In the mentality of people of 21th century is a thought that being thin is something good, so that's normal that we want to compliment someone by calling someone ,,skinny". But there are groups of people with problems such as anorexia, bulimia... those people may hear it in two situations. First one is when they just started to suffer and they don't see anything wrong about it. Hearing compliments about their weight may make them continue bad eating habits. Second situation is when that kind of person is trying to recovery. That person knows that he/she needs help but hearing those kind of ,,compliment" it makes even harder for them to beat their illness. All I want to say is that those kind of ,,compliments" can have different results depending on what person is getting that kind of compliment. I hope that I helped you.
July 14th, 2016 1:28am
Skinny isn't always considered a compliment in my opinion. It can be used in a condescending manner.
July 24th, 2016 7:56am
Not really its more of a way to express ones opinions some people like it some people dont. But it's just an opinion
July 24th, 2016 10:26pm
Not always. Some people don't like skinny people. Just like some people don't like big people. Some love them both. There is always going to be someone out there that doesn't like the way you like whether skinny, big, short or tall , but that's a part of life. Only your opinion matters when it comes to your appearance.
July 25th, 2016 1:43am
It depends on the context and I think it depends how that person tells you this. But how our society is, in general I think yes, it's a compliment.
July 30th, 2016 2:32am
I don't think skinny should be a compliment or insult, skinny just describes your weight. But what is skinny? Skinny can be unhealthy or very healthy. Even if its unhealthy skinny, if somebody is telling you that you're extremely skinny it could be because they care about your health.
July 31st, 2016 2:00pm
Not always, it depends on what the person that says it Likes, sometimes it's unhealthy and sometimes is a healthy to try to be skinny.
July 31st, 2016 2:17pm
No, not at all. Sometimes people address other people as skinny in a bad way, as if they're too skinny, have no curves etc. Skinny isn't always a good thing, and curvy/fat isn't a bad thing unless it's unhealthy :)
July 31st, 2016 3:35pm
It depends on the intentions of the person giving the comments! Usually, It is, but sometimes it can be used in a bad way.
August 2nd, 2016 2:38am
Being told that you are skinny can be very triggering for someone who has been in recovery from an eating disorder. It can remind them of how they once felt and could trigger a slip depending on where they are in their recovery process. Others who are still in the thralls of their eating disorder strive to be known as skinny. It really depends on the individual person.
August 3rd, 2016 3:48pm
Your weight is your weight. If you're skinny, you're beautiful. If you're average, you're beautiful. If you're fat, you're beautiful. You're weight isn't necessarily a compliment. Some people make fun of those who are skinny.
August 5th, 2016 2:03am
No. People can be quite mean, any word used concerning your weight can be derogatory. The only thing you can be is yourself.
August 5th, 2016 3:59am
In my opinion, no. While yes, skinny is the beauty ideal for women in our society, not everyone will consider it a compliment. Not everyone is skinny by choice, it can be due to illness (mental or physical). In that case, telling that person how skinny they are could be offensive (if the illness is physical) or triggering (in the case of anorexia).
August 6th, 2016 1:25am
Not always. Skinny can be used to condescendingly say "you need to eat more", or "you are a walking skeleton". If you are healthy with a good diet and regular exercise you can assume they mean it as a compliment
August 8th, 2016 12:50am
No. To many people it may seem like it, but some people may not want to be seen as skinny. They want to be "normal". Or they maybe just don't want to be labeled by society's standards. While many people want to lose weight, others want to gain weight. Skinny is not always a compliment.
August 20th, 2016 12:32am
That depends on two things: - How do you feel about being called skinny - The context skinny was used in.
August 20th, 2016 11:15am
No. Sometimes it means that people are really worried about you. You can deffinetly be too skinny.
August 25th, 2016 12:53am
If you personally like to be skinny than it is considered a compliment. But some don't like to be called skinny, so I think that case it may not be taken as a compliment.
August 25th, 2016 12:30pm
It depends on both the person giving the complement and the person receiving it. Many times we desire the opposite of others vision of healthy weight.
September 1st, 2016 5:05am
No. There are many types of body that are appreciated. And many types of body shape that people would like to be.
September 7th, 2016 1:45am
No, skinny isn't always a compliment. For some people it can be but others who are trying to gain weight after recovering from an eating disorder or who simply dont like their body may find it to be an insult.
September 9th, 2016 11:56pm
Skinny is not always considered a compliment like some might say it in a way like oh your so skinny and that your ugly which isn't obviously true but people say it you know
September 11th, 2016 10:07pm
I would say no especially if it's use in a context where the person is worried. If you see skinny always as a compliment you might have an issue
September 29th, 2016 11:54am
Skinny is often used as a compliment, or even an aspiration for some people. However many slimmer people have heard the word skinny used as an insult, often used to make them feel bad about their smaller size. Some people refer to this as 'skinny-shaming'. Maybe it's important to remember that it's not always about the words we use, but how we use them.
September 30th, 2016 3:26am
No, I used to get this a lot, paired with remarks about how other "body types" are nicer, more "womanly". So no, the best thing you can do is not comment about someoneĀ“s weight. Say "you look happy, you look healthy" instead.
October 2nd, 2016 3:18pm
People started calling me skinny for as long as I can remember. It wasn't until recently people starting mixing in the word unhealthy with me being skinny and it was then that I realized that maybe being skinny isn't always a compliment.