Noma Khumalo overcame all the odds, including body-shamming, on her journey to winning Idols. But her biggest challenge now is to encourage "plus-sized" women to also believe in themselves.
Noma, who won the popular music reality competition last year, told East Coast Radio's Phat Joe that she has had to face a barrage of criticism about her weight and now wants to encourage "plus-sized women" to also feel comfortable in their own skin.
"People can say what they say on social media but I know who I am and her words will not necessarily define who I am. I really want to represent women out there who are plus-sized and don't think they can do it. That is what I am fighting for because I am plus-sized," Noma said.
She said that she had never been concerned about what people think of her physical appearance, but nearly lost her resolve during her time on Idols.
Speaking about her experience, Noma said that she felt insecure on stage during one performance and was not able to deliver to her fullest potential.
"I was wearing a polka dot dress and Unathi could see right through me, that I was holding back. In the back of my mind I couldn't help but think, 'Ah, Twitter is going to say this' or, 'someone is going to say that my outfit didn't look good this week or my make-up didn't look great this week'. You can't help but think about those things," she explained.
|How Idols Winner Noma Khumalo Beat Body-Shamming ... Now I Want To Represent Plus-Sized Women|
That advice helped when socialite Dineo Moloisane later took to social media in an attempt to body-shame Noma, saying that she "doesn’t even look like an Idol" and should "start by losing weight". Noma's fans later hit back at Dineo's comments, sparking a social media storm.
Noma said that she was unaware of the controversy at the time and was so busy that she only learnt about the incident two months later.
"(At the time) there was media after media. Interview after interview. Recording session, performance. So, sitting on my phone was never a luxury," she explained.
Thanks Unathi for ensuring our gal can now inspire!