Elizabeth Hurley, 55, hits the hot tub after sharing defiant response to 'mean' critics of her bikini photos

·3-min read

Elizabeth Hurley is steaming up social media, and the British actress has no regrets about it. 

Hurley, 55, treated her 2 million Instagram followers to a video of herself soaking in a hot tub on Saturday. Sporting a hot pink string bikini with chain accents from her swimwear line, Elizabeth Hurley Beach, the bronzed beauty tilted her head back as she luxuriated in the water while music played in the background.

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Hurley's sultry Instagram post comes just a couple days after the actress spoke out about the constant criticism she receives regarding her social media presence, which often consists of bikini photos. 

“I think people are mean to women and I don’t think it’s how people should be," Hurley told Extra! during the Breast Cancer Research Foundation’s Virtual Hot Pink Evening on Friday, Yahoo Life previously reported. "So I can’t say I am a fan of those sorts of comments, really.”

Hurley went on to explain that since she owns her own swimwear line, using herself as an advertisement for the brand is simply a smart business decision.

"Well the thing is, I have my own swimwear line," she explained. "I wouldn’t ordinarily be prancing around in quite so much beachwear, so there is a reason behind prancing around in so many swimsuits."

But with most people quarantining at home during the coronavirus pandemic, people haven't been traveling to exotic locations as often. That makes publicizing her company from her home back in England a little bit more difficult.

“It's been very difficult because we haven’t been allowed to go on vacation for 14 months, same as everybody else. And I have a beachwear company and haven’t been on the beach. So it has been challenging," said Hurley. "Hence, we have been using what we can. We’ve been improvising. So, yes, we’ve been on hay bales, we’ve been in the snow, we’ve been in the shower.”

One individual who has had plenty to say about Hurley's bikini photos is former Good Morning Britain host Piers Morgan. Back in January, he called Hurley's photos “creepy" and questioned whether her son Damien had shot the images himself.

In response, Hurley tweeted, "Far be it for me to suggest the tabloids get their facts muddled, but these pics were in fact taken by my 80-year-old mother. Not entirely sure if that puts minds at rest or not."

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The negative backlash to Hurley’s steamy photos is similar to the reactions garnered by fellow stars Salma Hayek and Paulina Porizkova. When asked why people have these negative feelings about women portraying their sexuality on social media, psychotherapist Bethany Marshall previously told Yahoo Life the backlash is complex mix of emotions.

“There is a fine line between jealousy, which is a competitive or hopeful feeling (‘Maybe I can look like that’) and envy, which drives our impulse to destroy. (‘You have something I want and there’s no hope of me getting it’),” said Marshall. “What these images say is, ‘I control my life’ a position that historically, was not applied to women. It’s a type of freedom we can’t stop looking at.”

Marshall also said the reaction to Hurley, Hayek and Porizkova is age-based, since the women all are in their 50s.

“Older women aren’t ‘supposed’ to be sexy — especially when they’re mothers,” Marshall told Yahoo Life. “These photos are taboo to those who believe that beyond their childbearing years, women should hide their bodies, and if they don’t, they are vain.”

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