plus-size model ashley graham talks body positivity at ted

The model and body activist lays out the isolating nature of the term “plus size” and redefines beauty for a generation of body diversity.

by Felicity Kinsella
02 June 2015, 5:05pm

The winds of change are a-blowing in 2015, and body diversity is slowly but surely becoming the norm. Girls of all shapes and sizes are redefining what "beach body ready" means, "plus size" models are campaigning to #DropThePlus, and women the world over are learning to love their bodies for what they are rather than what the media tell us they should be.

In her TED Talk, model and body activist Ashley Graham teaches self-acceptance and why the label "plus size" should be dropped. Graham explains that in the fashion industry, the term starts at a US size 8 (UK size 12) and goes up to a US size 16 (UK size 20), meaning the majority of the audience she was speaking to would be deemed "plus size." "I felt free once I realized I was never going to fit the narrow mould that society wanted me to fit in," she goes on to say. "I was never going to be perfect enough for an industry that defines perfection from the outside in."

Speaking about the difficulty she had accepting her size when she was younger, Ashley filled her life with temporary fixes (parties and boys) and felt embarrassed when people asked what her profession was. Now, she encourages self-love and being your own role model (even if that does mean abiding by the advice of all those self-help websites you read in the midst of your Bridget Jones phase) and telling your reflection; "you are bold, you are brilliant, and you are beautiful."


Photography Frances Tulk-Hart

Plus Size
Ashley Graham
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