Plus Size Fashion Models Face Strict Guidelines

  • Amy Bebbington

Plus size fashion models are securing contracts ensuring that the industry is more diverse. High street brands and fashion designers are approaching curvaceous models to front campaigns, which is an exciting time for the niche. However, what is the size range for plus size models? The issue has been attacked before claiming that size 12 models should not be deemed curvaceous yet simply a depiction of the average figure in society. Even size 16 models declare that the derogatory word ‘plus size’ should not apply to them. So, to clarify where does the niche begin and in this case, more importantly end? Is there a finish line that prevents certain sizes from modelling? A cut off point? Or are all figures accepted?


Well, in Rosie Mercado’s case a size 34 is definitely not accepted as she had to loose 200Ibs shrinking down to a size 16 to revive her modelling career. The motivation was also sparked by being told that she had to buy two tickets on a flight as the aeroplane could not accommodate her size bringing her to tears. Let’s discuss Rosie Mercado’s journey further to define the size bracket of plus size modelling.

Complimented for her stunning face, high cheekbones and defined jawline, the model was accepted by many industry professionals who witnessed pictures that isolated her upper physique. Yet, when her lower body was revealed showing a 65 inch hip measurement the professionals would soon loose interest rapidly. The airline incident triggered for Rosie to loose the weight by signing up for a self help course and now models for the likes of Igigi and Ibbi World . Some may argue that the model should have been accepted for how she was without loosing weight yet others suggest that a size 34 is not a healthy representation for others to look to. Rosie admits that she used to eat unhealthily so began to substitute fast food for lean proteins, fruits and vegetables and an exercise regime, which has allowed for her to have a better quality of life for her and her children. She now has been signed to Manhattan-based True Model Management and has featured in campaigns for plus-size fashion companies.

Rosie explains: “It has not been the easiest journey, and I’ve had my ups and down. But, when I compare my quality of life to how it used to be, I know it was worth it.”

“When I was larger, I just wasn’t leading the lifestyle I wanted. Now I couldn’t be happier.”

It appears that there is an unwritten rule that for above a size 16-18 there is very little work for models. However, it is evident that the reason is due to the health factor, as a size 34 will project the wrong image to women as Rosie describes how previously she could not physically lead the life that she wanted due to her weight. Living a healthy lifestyle by eating a nutritious diet and exercising regularly is the main issue and as long as plus size fashion models (like all other models) adhere to a fitness regime and diet that works for them then size should not be a problem.

We believe that all models should focus on being fit and healthy rather than concentrating on their size. Plus size modelling should not be so defined by a size bracket but campaigning to ensure women love their bodies and feel happy and healthy! If you agree, help create awareness by sharing this article and make sure to use the hashtag #ukmodelslondon #plussizemodel #bodyawareness

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