Size 8 Mariska Hargitay "Never Felt Compelled to Be a Skinny Actress"

Here's the skinny: actress Mariska Hargitay doesn't feel pressure to be pin thin.

"I'm a size 8, and I feel proud of that because it's healthy," the Law & Order: SVU star, 45, tells the February issue of More magazine. "I've never felt compelled to be a skinny actress."

Check out pics of stars who have been scrutinized for their weight

The actress goes on, "I think I'm a very attractive person, but... that's not where I get my esteem."

Not everyone has agreed with her throughout her career.

"A guy at ABC told me to change my name and get a nose job," she says. "I said, 'You get a nose job.'"

Hargitay has a lot to live up to, being the daughter of famed blonde bombshell actress Jayne Mansfield.

"I can never compete, so I don't try," she says. "Being a sex symbol is not my thing; it's not where I shine."

Hargitay also weighs in on the Jay Leno-Conan O'Brien late-night battle -- and how it affected Law & Order's ratings.

"It ruined our numbers. The first four episodes, we were considerably down because nobody knew when the show was on," she says. "I hope we go back to where we belong [at 10 p.m.]. It was doing so well. Why mess with it?"