Clad back in chic black bikini, Hilary Duff played volleyball, splashed in the ocean and danced with friends at the July 4 bash she hosted in Malibu, California. “She’s healthy, happy and looks amazing,” says partygoer Brody Jenner.
“She was the hottest girl on the beach!” Mingling with her guests – including Lindsay Lohan and John Cusack – Duff, was all smiles and easy confidence as she showed off a Pilates-perfect figure.
“I feel good about myself right now,” says Duff. “As you get older, you just get more comfortable in your own skin.”
But she wasn’t always so self-assured. At the age of 15, she was hurt by press reports that said she had gained weight. “It made me obsessed,” she says of the story that drove her into a hard-core diet (protein and vegetables only) and exercise binge.
Note: Check out Hilary Duff’s new diet and workout.
“You go through a time when you become conscious of things you don’t like about yourself,” Duff recalls. “You stress out about being in a bathing suit.”
The 5-foot-2 Hilary Duff whittled down her weight (NYC internist Marc Siegel estimates she was 100 pounds at her thinnest), only to be criticized for being too skinny.
“Everybody speculates that you’re not eating or are doing drugs,” she says. “You’re damned if you do, and you’re damned if you don’t.”
Thanks to an intervention from sister Haylie, 22 (“She said, ‘Why are you being so strict with yourself?’ It was like an awakening”), Duff eased up on her rigorous program: “I don’t want to be so skinny that people are like, Oh, my God, she’s lost a lot of weight.” [via]