Hannah Brown got raw and real in a new video about her struggle with body image. The 26-year-old candidly spoke about her challenges in the 20 minute YouTube video — which she continued to deal with during her season of The Bachelor back in 2018. “I only ate candy,” she confessed at one point during the video. “I was still dealing with all this acne — I remember I finally got my body weight and then my face is fessed up…I remember I wouldn’t eat the food. I was gaining back weight but it wasn’t sustainable,” she explained on Wednesday, Feb. 10.
“It’s hard when you’re always around beautiful, professional women,” she went on, adding she was “so hard on herself” when she was younger. Specifically, the Alabama native — who grew up dancing — would obsess over her thigh gap during her youth. “I don’t naturally have a thigh gap. I always hated my legs,” she explained. “I wanted to be perfect. I was always self-conscious that I wasn’t as thin as I wanted to be.” Now, she “looks back” and realizes she didn’t have “self-worth” in her younger years. She adamantly encouraged watchers to “love themselves” during the lengthy confessional, which was was reflective and relatable.
As a young child, the former Miss Alabama even modeled for various brands — including tween favorite Limited Too. Hannah looked so adorable in the throwback post as she smiled big in one of the brands’ iconic logo t-shirts for a magazine shoot. “I had a really round face, like I still do now, and huge dimples,” she reflected, looking back at the throwback ads. “Everyone would always comment on my ‘little chubby face.’” Pageant life exasperated her struggles as a teen, leading to struggles with her mental health.
“I had a lot of anxiety. A lot of depression,” she said, noting she “loved to eat” and “loved sugar” but felt pressured while competing in pageants. “[Someone said] I was ‘pretty’ but ‘I was a little curvy’ or ‘a little thick’,” she remembered, influencing her to begin an unhealthy diet routine. She lost 15 pounds eating eggs, green beans and chicken and ended up with “abs for the first time” but felt “so hungry” all of the time. Hannah — who later dated Tyler Cameron from her season of The Bachelorette — went as far to dub her eating habits an “extreme yo-yo diet.”
At 26, Hannah has come to terms with her body — despite still having some challenges. “I didn’t have any self-worth through all that,” she said. “I have definitely struggled with accepting the way my body is now. Loving myself and knowing because I have taken off this time [from work], is loving my body. I needed rest. I needed to dig deep emotionally in who I want to be,” she confessed, explaining she’s “grown and changed.”