Lea Salonga defends Jessy Mendiola over body-shaming comments

MANILA, Philippines – The Voice Kids coach and Broadway star Lea Salonga defended Jessy Mendiola as the actress continues to get criticized online after topping FHM's 100 Sexiest 2016 list.

Jessy has been getting many negative comments on social media, with some calling her "fat," or not even deserving of the title. (IN PHOTOS: Stars at 'FHM's 100 Sexiest' 2016)

On her Facebook page, Lea wrote: "For the record, I think Jessy Mendiola is one of the sexiest people I've ever cast my eyes on. It has less to do with her physique (which, by the way, is nothing to sneeze at) and more to do with how she carries herself. She could gain 20 pounds right now and my opinion of her wouldn't change."

Lea added: "Sexy has nothing to do with the outer shell and all to do with what's in you. You could be a Victoria's Secret model and have zero sex appeal, or be someone customarily plus-sized and get everyone in the room to set their gaze upon you. Or your opinion could differ from mine and not be any less valid. It's in the eye of the beholder." 

 

In an interview with reporters during the Star Magic anniversary Sunday, July 31, Jessy said that she has read some of the comments about her online.

"We all have our own opinions[...] We can all post whatever opinions we want to post or our views or our ideas. Kaya lang sana (I just hope), let's all be responsible," she said. 

Jessy added that she visits the profiles of those who comment on her social media accounts and shared that some of them are very young. 

"Let's put aside all the hate and the bashing. Let's be more responsible not only for us, our actions or our words but also for our future generation," she said.

Even before topping FHM's 100 Sexiest 2016 list, Jessy has been getting negative comments on her social media accounts. In May, she posted a photo of herself in a bikini while in Boracay and addressed the nonstop body-shaming against her. 

On her Instagram account, she wrote: 

"My body may not be perfect but that will not stop me from being confident with myself. I've had my fair share of body shaming comments. So I know how it feels like to be called 'FAT' or 'TUMABA'. Well, just to inform some of you 'PERFECT' people. We all come in different sizes and shapes but that shouldn't stop us from being happy with our own bodies.

"There are times that you will gain weight and there are times that you will lose it. It's normal. It just shows that you are a human being. So whether you are curvy, malaman, skinny, too skinny, on the plus size or even on the plus plus size, you have ALL the right to be confident with yourself because that is who and what YOU are. If you don't love yourself enough, who else will?

"Think about it. So go ahead girl, wear that bikini and FLAUNT it. After all, it's YOUR body. Not theirs. Sabi nga ni Demi Lovato 'What's wrong with being confident.'" – with a report from Alexa Villano / Rappler.com