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upworthy
Joy

Owner of plus-size dress shop gifts $700 prom dress to 'shy' teen after watching her light up

Creating moments like these is why she opened her store in the first place.

juicy body goddess, plus-size prom dress
@juicybodygoddess/TikTok

Elyse Monroe found the perfect dress, then found out it costs nothing.

Adolescence is a harrowing time for body image and self-esteem all around, but few milestones are as universally daunting as finding a prom dress. Whether it’s due to budget constraints, not being able to find a dress that fits, or both, what should be a fun event is often viscerally dreaded.

This was certainly the case for Summer Lucille. Lucille told Today.com that growing up, “if you weren’t skinny, there weren’t many options, and it was devastating for me because I’ve always loved fashion.”

She recalled, “I went to my prom looking like a church lady in a suit dress with a jacket because it was the only thing that fit. It was a very sad period in my life.”


Wanting to ensure a more positive experience for others, Lucille opened up her plus-size-only dress shop, Juicy Body Goddess, in 2016. The boutique, based in North Carolina, features mostly Lucille’s own designs of formal dresses up to a size 6X.

Juicy Body Goddess really started gaining traction when Lucille set up a TikTok account sharing truly joyful interactions with customers as they try on different styles.

Besides having an eye for fashion, Lucille is a masterful hype woman, making others feel beautiful with her enthusiastic, heartfelt praises. She clearly loves what she does. Here's one of many, many examples:

@juicybodygoddess I had to get her number so she can model🤩 #plussizefashion #plussizeboutique #birthday #plussizetiktok #juicybodygoddess ♬ original sound - JuicyBodyGoddess

Juicy Goddess’s TikTok presence is how 18-year-old Elyse Monroe found out about the store. Monroe and her family drove nearly six hours for a consultation, determined to find the perfect dress.

Lucille shared with People that Monroe was initially “nervous and shy,” but after trying on a sparkly, form-fitting purple gown, everything changed.

"When she got into that purple dress, she lit up," Lucille told People.

There was still a budget problem, however. Monroe’s family could only afford to pay $400. The dress was $700.

Thankfully, Lucille had one more surprise up her sleeve.

A now viral TikTok video shows the Monroe family approach the register, asking how much the dress would cost.

Lucille can be heard saying, “This dress is $700…but it’s free.”

Yeah, as you can probably expect, this leaves the teen and her family a bit emotional. Watch below:

@juicybodygoddess I didn't cry until I did edit #plussize #plussizetiktok #juicybodygoddess #plussizefashion ♬ original sound - JuicyBodyGoddess

The video has had an overwhelming number of responses. Many commiserated with their own painful prom memories and applauded Lucille for her generosity. Some were even inspired to perform their own act of kindness by donating. Lucille told People that since posting the video, there has been $12,000 worth of gift card purchases. Yowza.

This is such an amazing example of what can happen when we celebrate uniqueness, spread generosity, and prioritize making everyone feel worthy of praise.

If you’d like to purchase a gift card from Juicy Body Goddess, click here. Or, if you wanna just follow along on some gorgeous fittings, you can find the Juicy Body Goddess TikTok here.


This article originally appeared on 3.15.23

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Photo by David R. Tribble/Wikimedia Commons.

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Commence epic reply...


(full text transcribed under the post).

A Facebook user recently commented that the Eagles had "played like they were wearing tutus!!!"

Our response:

"With all due respect to the Eagles, let's take a minute to look at what our tutu wearing women have done this month:

By tomorrow afternoon, the ballerinas that wear tutus at Pennsylvania Ballet will have performed The Nutcracker 27 times in 21 days. Some of those women have performed the Snow scene and the Waltz of the Flowers without an understudy or second cast. No 'second string' to come in and spell them when they needed a break. When they have been sick they have come to the theater, put on make up and costume, smiled and performed. When they have felt an injury in the middle of a show there have been no injury timeouts. They have kept smiling, finished their job, bowed, left the stage, and then dealt with what hurts. Some of these tutu wearers have been tossed into a new position with only a moments notice. That's like a cornerback being told at halftime that they're going to play wide receiver for the second half, but they need to make sure that no one can tell they've never played wide receiver before. They have done all of this with such artistry and grace that audience after audience has clapped and cheered (no Boo Birds at the Academy) and the Philadelphia Inquirer has said this production looks "better than ever".

So no, the Eagles have not played like they were wearing tutus. If they had, Chip Kelly would still be a head coach and we'd all be looking forward to the playoffs."

Happy New Year!

In case it wasn't obvious, toughness has nothing to do with your gender.

Gendered and homophobic insults in sports have been around basically forever — how many boys are called a "pansy" on the football field or told they "throw like a girl" in Little League?

"They played like they were wearing tutus" is the same deal. It's shorthand for "You're kinda ladylike, which means you're not tough enough."

Pure intimidation.

Photo by Ralph Daily/Flickr.

Toughness, however, has a funny way of not being pinned to one particular gender. It's not just ballerinas, either. NFL cheerleaders? They get paid next to nothing to dance in bikini tops and short-shorts in all kinds of weather — and wear only ever-so-slightly heavier outfits when the thermometer drops below freezing. And don't even get me started on how mind-bogglingly badass the Rockettes are.

Toughness also has nothing to do with what kind of clothes you wear.

As my colleague Parker Molloy astutely points out, the kinds of clothes assigned to people of different genders are, and have always been, basically completely arbitrary. Pink has been both a "boys color" and a "girls color" at different points throughout history. President Franklin D. Roosevelt — longtime survivor of polio, Depression vanquisher, wartime leader, and no one's idea of a wimp — was photographed in his childhood sporting a long blonde hairstyle and wearing a dress.

Many of us are conditioned to see a frilly pink dance costume and think "delicate," and to look at a football helmet and pads and think "big and strong." But scratch the surface a little bit, and you'll meet tutu-wearing ballerinas who that are among toughest people on the planet and cleat-and-helmet-wearing football players who are ... well. The 2015 Eagles.

You just can't tell from their outerwear.

Ballerinas wear tutus for the same reason football players wear uniforms and pads:

Photo by zaimoku_woodpile/Flickr.


To get the job done.


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