Virgie Tovar, MA is an author, activist and one of the nation's leading experts and lecturers on fat discrimination and body image. She is the editor of Hot & Heavy: Fierce Fat Girls on Life, Love and Fashion (Seal Press, November 2012) and the mind behind #LoseHateNotWeight.

She holds a Master's degree in Human Sexuality with a focus on the intersections of body size, race and gender. After teaching "Female Sexuality" at the University of California at Berkeley, where she completed a Bachelor's degree in Political Science in 2005, she went onto host "The Virgie Show" (CBS Radio) in San Francisco. She is certified as a sex educator and was voted Best Sex Writer by the Bay Area Guardian in 2008 for her first book.

Virgie has been featured by the New York Times, MTV, Al Jazeera, the San Francisco Chronicle, NPR, Huffington Post, Bust Magazine, Jezebel, 7x7 Magazine, XOJane, and SF Weekly as well as on Women’s Entertainment Television and The Ricki Lake Show. Her most recent speaking engagements have included University of Washington, Earlham College, Hollins University, University of California at Berkeley, University of California at Davis, California College of the Arts, Sonoma State University, and Humboldt State University. She lives in San Francisco and offers workshops and lectures nationwide. Find her online at And on instagram

Virgie Tovar's Articles

image credit Virgie Tovar

Take The Cake: The BoPo-Washing Of Weight Watchers (& The Weight Loss Industry)

How does a weight loss company sell weight loss products to people who don’t want to be fat but also don’t want to say they don’t want to be fat or identify as being on a diet? This question lives at... Read...
Virgie Tovar    |   01.10.19 9am   |   SHARE
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Take The Cake: Who Is LuLu Roman?

It’s hard to be fat in this culture (period), but it feels alchemical to me to watch these stars rise to the top — highly visible, on screens all over the world, navigating the entertainment industry... Read...
Virgie Tovar    |   01.3.19 11am   |   SHARE
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TakeThe Cake: 9 Body Positive Resolutions For 2019 

Resolution season is rough for many of us. Most goal-setting relies upon self-defeating and depleting aspirations, like assimilation into problematic cultural ideals (like thinness). In short, most... Read...
Virgie Tovar    |   12.27.18 10am   |   SHARE
image credit Virgie Tovar via Instagram

Take The Cake: Is ‘Dieting’ Really Disordered Eating?

It’s taken me a long time to write about this topic because I’m not an eating disorder specialist or clinician. Beside that, I have long considered “dieting” and “disordered eating” to exist as... Read...
Virgie Tovar    |   12.20.18 7am   |   SHARE
image credit: Virgie Tovar via @curvystreets

Take The Cake: My Body Did This Magical Thing & It Blew My Mind

This was the first time in my adult life when I had become really crystal clear on what I wanted and needed from others. I have been so used to letting others lead the exchange, unsure how to... Read...
Virgie Tovar    |   12.13.18 12am   |   SHARE
image credit: Virgie Tovar via Instagram

Take The Cake: Love Letter To The Fat Babe At The Club

I hadn't been to a club like this one — the kind full of straight men who are probably homophobic and at least a little coercive, who smell like Old Spice deodorant and have enough disposable income... Read...
Virgie Tovar    |   12.6.18 12am   |   SHARE

Take The Cake: 'Tis The Season For Fat Shaming & Here's Why

'Tis the season for complex feelings about our bodies as the...
Virgie Tovar    |   11.29.18 12am   |   SHARE
image credit: Virgie Tovar via Instagram

Take The Cake: Doing Friendsgiving Is A Radical Act For Me

What horrible thing is going to happen this year? Is my aunt going to touch me or someone else inappropriately or make sexual innuendo? What terrible thing is my mother going to say to my aunt about... Read...
Virgie Tovar    |   11.22.18 12am   |   SHARE
@virgietovar on Instagram

Take The Cake: Body Hating Mornings? Add This One Thing To Your Bedroom

I got tired of waking up and being terrified for my health and so I decided to do what I’d been taught to do in moments of distress: craft.
Virgie Tovar    |   11.15.18 12am   |   SHARE
image credit: Virgie Tovar via Instagram

Take The Cake: Stop Shaming Indirect Communication

I’ve been ashamed of my indirect communication style for a really long time. Recently I realized that I was done feeling shame for the way I navigate.
Virgie Tovar    |   11.8.18 12am   |   SHARE