Our lives are glu­teus-max­i­mized, and 2016 might yet be the pin­na­cle. Here’s our de­fin­i­tive guide to get­ting your best booty ever.

ELLE (Canada) - - Body - by carli whitwell

when Amy Schumer wound us up about our ob­ses­sion with over­sized tushes in the 2015 par­ody track “Milk Milk Le­mon­ade,” she wasn’t (en­tirely) kid­ding. Last year in Canada, Google searches that in­cluded the word “butt” (and sim­i­lar de­scrip­tors) out­paced those of 2004 by 89 per­cent.

Along with #belfie (butt selfie), #side­butt and #un­der­butt are the new­est hash­tags to go along with show­ing off your sculpted rear—that rear you prob­a­bly achieved in your gym’s glute-spe­cific work­out class (or from which you smoothed away some cel­lulite in a bum fa­cial at the spa). And let’s be real: Can you re­mem­ber the last time you saw a pop star per­form in any­thing but a der­rière-em­pha­siz­ing body­suit? Ex­perts agree that we can thank Jen­nifer Lopez for this rise in fas­ci­na­tion with the be­hind. Re­search shows that the more me­dia you take in, the more likely you are to want to emu­late that “I haven’t eaten carbs in years” beauty stan­dard. So when Lopez wore THAT Ver­sace dress to the 2000 Gram­mys, the masses—who were used to the ’90s reign of the waif—had a new, curvier muse. Fif­teen years later, such in­spo is every­where: See Kim Kar­dashian, Bey­oncé, Nicki Mi­naj et al.

Of course, cel­e­brat­ing our rear ends isn’t en­tirely new­­—just ask rap­per Sir Mix-A-Lot. Many cul­tures have long bowed down to the fuller fig­ure, crown­ing a big booty as the ul­ti­mate in fem­i­nin­ity. “In black and His­panic cul­tures, hav­ing a tiny waist, large hips and a large butt is seen as at­trac­tive,” says Dionne Stephens, an as­so­ciate pro­fes­sor of psy­chol­ogy at Florida In­ter­na­tional Univer­sity who spe­cial­izes in sex in pop cul­ture. “But it was really framed [by so­ci­ety] as highly sex­u­al­ized and prob­lem­atic. JLo was the first to make it okay.”

Per­sonal trainer Lyz­a­beth Lopez can re­late. Lopez, who is part Latino, used to go hun­gry in or­der to get lean. “Be­fore, there was this one ideal,” she says. Now, she teaches women how to make the most of their fig­ures. Stephens agrees that pop cul­ture’s ac­cep­tance of a hy­per­curvy bot­tom has helped us feel bet­ter about this part of our bod­ies. “But un­til we start ac­cept­ing dif­fer­ent sizes and be­ing re­al­is­tic with pro­por­tions,” she says—for ex­am­ple, some­one with a big­ger bum may be big­ger all over and that’s okay—“we haven’t hit a place of ac­cept­abil­ity.” The first step: lov­ing ev­ery part of our bod­ies—no ifs, ands or butts. h

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