By Dakota Fisher, staff writer
People tend to have a gross misconception of what it’s like to be a model: jetting all around the globe, sitting first class with a glass of the finest Chardonnay imaginable; relaxing in a beautiful five-star hotel with people to cater to your every whim; being primped and polished to perfection. Then all they have to do is make a few sexy faces at a camera while wearing nothing but their underwear. They are then handed a check for thousands of dollars and get their face slapped on a huge billboard in Times Square. This may be true for some supermodels, but the life of a plus size model is not so lavish.
Being the low man on the totem pole is not a stroll in the park. Plus size models face countless struggles in their line of work, yet still manage to promote image equality and positive body image.
MSA Modeling is an agency in New York that features plus size models, as well as the average runway model. Andrew Higgins, director at MSA Models, worked with women’s magazine Marie Claire in doing an experiment about men’s views on plus sized women.
“They took a plus sized model and a camera crew to ask men what aspects they liked about a plus sized model. They then asked if the men could tell her size. Not one in one hundred men knew. They didn’t see beauty as a dress size,” said Higgins.
“When they asked women the same question, the women were more critical about what parts needed help, while the men just said what they thought was attractive.”
The average woman is a size 14, however in the modelling industry, anything over a size 6 is considered “plus size.”
“I love plus size models.” said Lindsey Bonfiglio, 9. “They show that being skinny isn’t the only kind of beautiful and that it’s okay to be who you are.”
Plus sized models depict the body of the average woman, yet don’t receive the admiration they deserve. In fact, many argue that plus size models glorify obesity and promote a negative body image.
No one should be encouraged to starve themselves or to hate their bodies because they don’t match up to the unrealistic, photoshopped fictions that decorate our ads and tabloids. A five foot nine, 197 pound woman is just as beautiful as a woman who is five foot one and 105. Some women are curvier than others, some are skinnier, some shorter, some taller, but there is beauty in all.