Ariel Winter Masters Being a Teenager, (While Possibly Morphing Into a Kardashian)

Ariel Winter Workman, known professionally as Ariel Winter, is an American actress. She is best known for her role as Alex Dunphy in the comedy series Modern Family

No one said it’s easy being a teenager, but Ariel Winter seems to have it all figured out. The Modern Family star has been on a roll as of late. From donning fashion choices that would make a lot of parents a wee bit nervous to clapping back at haters without shame and confirming that she’s single through social media posts, the 18-year-old actress is making no apologies to … well … anyone.

Winter’s evolution from girl next door (on TV, that is) to outspoken teen queen began unofficially in May 2015, when she was legally emancipated. ICYMI, back in 2012, Winter was removed from her mother’s home amid allegations of physical and emotional abuse, and roughly 18 months later her older sister, Shanelle Gray, was named her permanent guardian.

Earlier this year, Winter told Ellen Degeneres, “It has been very sad for me, but at the same time it’s been much better for me emotionally and physically to be on my own and have a better, safer household and support system.”

In her new environment, Winter has grown in confidence. Following in the steps of Kim Kardashian, she has championed positive body image through notes and captions on her social posts to be sure, but primarily via her photos of herself in barely-there ensembles. In May, the red-headed siren (who underwent breast reduction surgery last year to go from an F cup to a D) turned heads in a body-hugging lace gown by Xcite that showcased her ample cleavage.

“Senior #prom #2016 :)” she captioned the first pic, which featured her standing solo in front of a fountain. She followed this with a pic of herself alongside her dad, who looked every bit the proud papa. “Me and dad :) #prom,” she wrote. The dress was revealing, but not nearly as much as the one she would wear soon for graduation.

Roughly one month later, Winter shared a snap from her graduation party. For the milestone event, she opted for a light pink bandage dress with a cut-out revealing the underside of her ample breasts. The post was clearly intended as a public thank you to her sister (whom, you’ll remember, has been her guardian the last few years).

“Couldn’t be more grateful to @shanelle_gray & @davidbarrygray for throwing me the most amazing graduation party ever last night,” Winter gushed. “The amount of love and support they’ve shown me for the past four years has been life changing. My sister is my absolute best friend and my everything.” She went on to add, “I never would be where I am today with you two … you guys saved me and taught me to be the person I am today.”

And that person doesn’t take haters lying down. When critics commented on the revealing nature of Winter’s dress, the star took to Twitter to respond. “Dear sorry body-shamers, I looked HOT in that dress,” she argued. “And if you hate it, don’t buy it. But please get a hobby. XOXO Ariel #EmbraceYourBody.”

She followed this with a smattering of Instagram posts celebrating her physique. “Embrace all that you are. Don’t let those outside voices become your inner voice,” she wrote beside a snapshot of herself in tight jeans, cowboy boots, and a crop top.

“I have a Burt shirt and you don’t,” she added a few days later alongside a black-and-white snap of herself in a barely-there tee (featuring none other than Burt Reynolds) and a pair of frayed jean shorts unbuttoned to showcase her abs.

Winter has also recently asserted her independence by hinting at — and then confirming — her split from longtime boyfriend Laurent Claude Gaudette. The first post signaling trouble in paradise was from her prom and featured the actress posing with two middle fingers up at the camera and borrowing a Beyoncé line. “Middle fingers up/Put them hands high/Wave it in his face/Tell him boy bye,” she wrote, quoting a line from “Sorry.”

She then confirmed that she’s single in an Instagram featuring none other than Kim Kardashian. “When you’re surprised that people just haven’t gotten it yet,” said the image message along the top. Beneath it, a smiling Kim mused, “I’m like dropping hints that I’m single.” Winter wrote her own note as well, adding, “Hi there press people!” (In other words, she was ready to make her singledom official.)

It seems that as Winter asserts her newfound independence, however, she’s becoming more and more like a Kardashian herself — for better or worse. On Sunday, June 26, she posted a pic of her backside in a red-white-and-blue bikini and thanked her followers for their growing support. “2 million!!!” she gushed. “Wow! I can’t believe it … love you guys so much.” Would a nude selfie down the road be that big a surprise?

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Child Celeb Growing Up Ariel Winter