This model’s body is “re-shaping” the fashion industry
If you didn’t know Ashley Graham before, you’ve certainly come across the name as of late. Ashley Graham is the trail blazer responsible for changing the face and size of female standards of beauty….and incase you haven’t heard, this plus sized bombshell just graced the cover of the most highly coveted, heavily anticipated special edition magazine – wait for it: Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue.
For the first time in history, this iconic magazine featured a plus size model on its cover. Ashley and Sports Illustrated have officially changed the game!
This win didn’t come easy, a mere 6 years ago, ABC pushed back on airing a commercial featuring the big busted beauty modeling plus sized lingerie. Had the ad, set to run during primetime television been for Victoria Secret, there may not have been any issue. Yet today, Ashley shares this monumental honor with some of the most revered models of our time; Christie Brinkley, Heidi Klum and Tyra Banks to name a few. And although this is a definite sign of progress, the fact remains that over the past 100 years, the average size of the female model continues to decrease. 100 years ago, the standard of beauty for females was fleshy and full-bodied. Fast-forward to today, and the average model is 5.10 inches and weighs 107 pounds, an alarming contrast to the average north American woman of 5.4 inches and 148 pounds. Yet despite the alarming differential, the images of today’s models continue to be modified and enhanced to completely unrealistic and unattainable standards. The real victims are our daughters, sisters, mothers and friends, the females in our lives who are bombarded with unattainable and unrealistic images of beauty, weighing heavily on their self-worth and self-esteem.
The message we need to work towards is that there is beauty in every-BODY and the progress that’s been made is helping to solidify this message. Companies like Dove, Barbie-Mattel and of course Sports Illustrated are among the few to market body positivity and I commend them for this. As for Ashley, she’s working towards her next goal of taking over the runway at fashion week! With positive change comes momentum and may she continue to fight the good fight! Go Ashley!