Bikini model Ashley Graham makes history as the first plus size woman to feature in Sports Illustrated

25235542_0569Ashley Graham aged 27, from Lincoln, Nebraska has become the first plus size model to ever feature in an issue of Sports Illustrated magazine.

Ashley Graham Features in a stunning new campaign for swimwear brand swimsuitsforall, which was unveiled as the first ever plus size ad to have been selected to be on the pages of the publication’s iconic Swimsuit Issue.

Ashley Graham size 16 Model says- ‘I know my curves are sexy and I want everyone else to know that theirs are too,’

The Plus Size model stars in a new campaign #CurvesinBikinis. The campaign marks an important breakthrough for both Sports Illustrated and the wider fashion industry, which has come under heavy fire from critics in recent months for its alleged perception of plus size women.

‘You’re too fat,’ is something no woman should ever have to hear in the workplace. But for Ashley Graham, who has made a living for the past fifteen years modelling in the plus size clothes market, the insult is a regular occurrence.

No woman showed in the iconic magazine, which has a readership of 23 million, has ever been bigger or curvier than Ashley Graham, 27, who has made history as the first plus-size model to feature in Sports Illustrated.

Her advert for swimwear brand Swimsuitsforall has been selected to grace the pages of a magazine that in the past has featured supermodels such as Christie Brinkley, Elle Macpherson, Cindy Crawford and Naomi Campbell.

1423059113_ashley-graham-sports-illustrated-zoomHowever, It’s this precise mind-set that has made the now-ubiquitous descriptor “curvy” into a sort of relief prize for plus-size women, as if their hips and breasts are the only things that can make them beautiful.

Believe it or not, there are plenty of plus-size women who don’t have large breasts and it’s difficult for them to find bras, let alone bikinis. The saying “real women have curves,” while meant to be affirming, may be on its way to becoming a commandment.

Sports Illustrated going plus-size may mark the end of an era, but the Ashley Graham ad contains upsetting hints about the beauty standards that will certainly characterize the new era of the plus-size model.

It’s taken over 60 years for a plus-size woman to appear in a Sports Illustrated advertisement and, even then, her body is the smallest, fittest, and curviest it can possibly be. Will it take another 60 years before the average woman can see herself in a newsstand?

In conclusion, a model is a model and should not be labelled by her size.

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