Ashley Benson reveals being told she was 'too fat' made her 'stronger'

Pretty Little Liars star Ashley Benson is being honest when it comes to discussing the unrealistic beauty standards set forth in Hollywood. The 26-year-old opened up to Ocean Drive magazine’s January issue about the pressure to be thin in the industry.

“I was just told I was too fat for a part,” the size two actress revealed. While the starlet admitted that she cried for “30 minutes” after being told she was not skinny enough, she said, “You have to let it roll off your shoulders or it could cause a serious eating disorder.”

Ashley continued, “A lot of people in this industry hear they need to lose weight more times than they should. It does make you stronger, though. Because if you let that affect you, you can’t be in this industry—you’d go crazy.”

Photo: Randall Slavin

The Freeform star also wants her fans to know that she is far from perfect. She confessed that seeing a photoshopped photo of herself disappoints her. She explained, “I hate to think that girls are like, ‘She’s so skinny! Her skin is so perfect!’ I have pimples just like they do.”

Since being in show business since she was 14 years old, Ashley has managed to avoid the troublesome path many other young stars have fallen victim to. “I definitely see why some people can go a little nuts. Being successful at such a young age and I feel I never got to that level,” she said. “[It] is very difficult because you’re being told yes a thousand times more than you’re being told no. You’re making a lot of money, there are a lot of temptations, and there are no consequences no matter what you’re doing.”

While Ashley has steered clear of the party scene, she admitted that she does have her fun — though you’ll never see her having a “bad girl” moment in public! “I would never want to do anything that would sabotage my career,” the actress said. “I’d rather have dinner and drinks at someone’s house than go batsh-t crazy in public. It’s not my scene.”

The TV star’s hit show, Pretty Little Liars returns to Freeform, née ABC Family, this month. Regarding the upcoming season, she revealed her character, “Hanna has graduated col­lege and has moved on. She’s in a new relationship and is engaged. She’s very confident in who she is. She works in fashion now and is the most successful out of all of the girls.”

Ashley added, “There’s going to be twists and turns in her new relationship, and Caleb’s going to be there. He’s very much a part of her life. Fans are going to be surprised at how everything has turned out, but I think it will be a fun journey for them.”

Pretty Little Liars returns January 12 at 8 p.m. ET on Freeform.

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