11 Famous Plus-Size Models In The World

Changing the perspective on beauty and opening the stage to the inclusivity movement.

Reviewed by Eleonora Fiano, Fashion Stylist Eleonora Fiano Eleonora FianoFashion Stylist linkedin_iconinsta_icon
Written by , MSc Pratima Ati MSc
Edited by , MA (English Literature) Madhumati Chowdhury MA (English Literature) Experience: 7 years
Fact-checked by , MA (Journalism & Mass Communication), Certified Style & Image Consultant Srijani Roy Chowdhury MA (Journalism & Mass Communication), Certified Style & Image Consultant Experience: 3 years

Thanks to plus-size fashion models, today, society is gradually trying to break the stereotypes when it comes to body shapes. Gone are those days when being thin, tall, and skinny was essential to be considered beautiful. In today’s day and age, people make sure to have an inclusive outlook on things, especially looks. They are making the world understand that it is important to celebrate one’s own body. Fashion Stylist, Eleonora Fiano, opines, “Plus-size models are important because they promote diversity, challenge beauty norms, cater to market demand, boost confidence, and influence positive changes within the fashion industry. Their presence helps create a more inclusive and empowering environment for people of all body types.”

To this end, we shall talk about some of the plus models who are taking the lead and paving the way for all the plus-size people out there to flaunt their bodies like never before. So, without further ado, let us go ahead and learn about these models. Come on!

Top 11 Most Famous Plus-Size Models In The World

1. Ashley Graham

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Image: Instagram @ashleygraham

A supermodel who managed to be the first plus-size model on the Sports Illustrated cover and did it with so much grace that she bagged another three covers right after. She is associated with Vogue, British Vogue, Cosmopolitan, and many other big names. The American model continues to redefine the way a woman’s body is looked at and is a body image activist leading positive body movements, indeed making a difference. She has been featured in Vogue’s ‘30 Under 30’ list and is also part of the ‘25 Most Intriguing People’ in 2016. Ashley took it to the next level by writing a book titled ‘What Confidence, Beauty, And Power Really Look Like’. An inspiration in the most real sense.

Official Instagram – instagram.com

2. Jessica Leahy

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Image: Instagram

Jessica Leahy is an Australian supermodel who made her debut at the New York Fashion Week. She never dreamt of making it in the modeling industry, but she was one of those women who were extremely comfortable with their big and beautiful bodies. She is a true believer in the need for a genuine conversation about body types positivity, and empowerment. She propagates the need for women to be truly unapologetic and comfortable about their bodies.

Official Instagram – instagram.com

3. Precious Victoria Lee

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Image: Instagram

Precious Victoria Lee’s story is as precious as her name. From having an off-beat name to rocking a voluptuous body type and ethnicity that is not considered mainstream, Precious Lee is all about bending curves and breaking barriers toward acceptance. She followed Ashley Graham to be on the cover of Sports Illustrated when they started embracing plus-size models. She cut her hair short a few years ago even though all her agents advised her against it. She managed to create ripples but for all the right reasons.

protip_icon Did You Know?
Precious Victoria Lee began her modeling career at the tender age of 18 – and 2017 was the year when she did her first fashion show.

Official Instagram – instagram.com

4. Chloe Marshall

Plus size model Chloe Marshall rocking a swimsuit
Image: Instagram @chloemarshall01

An English supermodel, she won the Miss Surrey title in 2008 and was also the first plus-size model to make it to the Miss England finals. This gave her and the idea of plus-size a lot of mileage and representation. It opened up opportunities for her modeling career and also made her conviction to spread the message that you do not always have to be thin and tall to be considered beautiful, thus paving the way for fashion industry reform. Chloe later moved to New York and took up modeling assignments and did a lot of campaigns for Project Runway, Macy’s, and Torrid – a brand that specializes in plus-sized clothing.

Official Instagram – instagram.com

5. Danika Brysha

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Image: Instagram @danikabrysha

From battling a lousy relationship with food to losing weight and gaining it all back, Danika Brysha is a full-figured model who has evolved by facing her problems upfront and working with them. Danika went on to start her brand called ‘Model Meals’, which deals with delivering healthy food. She promotes the idea of being healthy but loving who you are. Her modeling career took off when she least expected it and she soon started signing assignments for Forever 21, Kohl’s, etc. There was no looking back after that! She is ranked one of the highest-paid models right after Gigi Hadid, Miranda Kerr, etc.

Official Instagram – instagram.com

6. Lexi Placourakis

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Image: Instagram @lexieleni

A mother of a 3-year-old, Lexi strives to debunk rules of how one is supposed to look. After a lot of personal struggle with weight, food, and trying to incorporate a healthy lifestyle, Lexi Placourakis is now a supermodel and entrepreneur, touching many lives. Her mother was Miss Hawaii USA who then continued her modeling career in Japan, but Lexi’s personality was nothing like her mom’s. She had a rather unconventional body type and mindset that does not come easily – but that’s what catapulted her into the career of a plus-size model.

Official Instagram – instagram.com

7. Tabria Majors

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Image: Instagram @tabriamajors

A woman of color and a plus-size model, Tabria Majors is a firm believer in body diversity and the idea of big and curvy women being just as sexy as regular models. An unassuming girl from Nashville, Tennessee, she left a steady 9 to 5 job to pursue plus-size modeling after a modeling agency approached her. However, she was moonlighting as a maid in LA to fend for herself, and that stint made her stronger than ever. From that to being on the cover of the Sports Illustrated magazine and hosting a podcast ‘The Thick’, she is driving her point home and inspiring women by breaking one barrier at a time.

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Born in the year 1990, Tabria Majors has worked for prominent brands like Victoria’s Secret, Calvin Klein, and Fashion Nova.

Official Instagram – instagram.com

8. Anita Marshall

Plus size model Anita Marshall rocking a sultry bikini look
Image: Instagram @anitamarshall_

Anita Marshall’s story, like any other plus-size model’s, has been anything but easy. It was not roses and snowflakes before she was taken seriously or considered a model, but she persisted and stuck around to prove herself. She gained traction from her Instagram post and found her way up in the fashion industry. From being a makeup artist from Boston to making it big in the industry, Anita Marshall is unstoppable.

Official Instagram –  instagram.com

9. Fluvia Lacerda

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Image: Instagram @fluvialacerda

Fluvia Lacerda, a Brazilian beauty, is nothing like your regular models. She is the first plus-size model to be on the cover of Playboy, Brazil. She was first discovered by a magazine editor on a bus in Manhattan, New York, and has ever since been modeling for some of the biggest plus-size brands as well as regular ones.

Official Instagram – instagram.com

10. Candice Huffine

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Image: Instagram @candicehuffine

Candice Huffine has been leading the charts of plus-size models for the longest time and has been in the industry for over a decade now advocating size diversity. Apart from being a supermodel, she inspires people to run marathons and shows women that you do not have to be skinny to be fit. She was the very first plus-size model to be on the cover of Elle magazine, which was very unlike the norm during her times. She is also coming up with her lingerie line to make beautiful women celebrate their bodies.

11. Denise Bidot

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Image: Shutterstock

Denise Bidot, a celebrated model and champion of body positivity, defies conventional beauty standards by embracing diversity in size, shape, and cultural background. Hailing from Puerto Rico and Kuwait, her multicultural roots underscore her role as an empowering figure. Beyond modeling, she advocates for societal change through her collaborations with major fashion brands. Her career reflects the kind of success in the fashion industry that embodies a steadfast commitment to positive change and representation for people of all backgrounds and body types. Bidot’s influence extends beyond the runway and makes her a significant force in fostering inclusivity and encouraging individuals to embrace their uniqueness in showbiz.

These are some of the famous plus size models. But, do you know how they reached there? Take a look!

Official Instagram – instagram.com

How To Be A Plus-Size Model

From Sports Illustrated to Vogue, Elle, and other big names that rule the fashion industry, companies are embracing plus-size modeling and diversity in sizes like never before. So yes, there is a lot of scope. However, the requirements are a little more stringent when it comes to plus-size modeling, but just like all rules, there are exceptions to these as well – and one may simply make way to success by being confident, fit, and taking care of themselves.

  • Size Requirements – Sizes 12-14 are ideal for print media. While 18 is considered great for modeling, anywhere between 18-22 fits the bill for runways.
  • Height Requirements – For plus-size modeling, height is a crucial parameter, so anywhere between 5’9” to 6” is ideal for high fashion. However, for commercial modeling, you need to match their requirement of body and face type.
  • Body Shape – It is a general understanding that your waist needs to be 10” lesser than your hips.

Infographic: The Best Plus-Size Fashion Brands

From models to clothing brands, the industry is constantly evolving and growing to make sustainable fashion inclusive. So, shopping for bigger sizes need not be tricky or tiring anymore. Click the infographic below for a list of some of the best plus-size shopping brands and stores.

the best plus-size fashion brands (infographic)

Illustration: StyleCraze Design Team

Get the high-quality PDF version of this infographic.

Download Infographic in PDF version

Plus-size models have not only broken many stereotypes but have also encouraged people to embrace themselves the way they are by promoting body positivity. Thanks to plus-size models like Ashley Graham, Jessica Leahy, Precious Victoria Lee, Chloe Marshall, and more, people feel comfortable in their unique bodies and skins today. They are more confident than ever before. So, if you ever feel low about yourself, take some inspiration from these amazing plus-size models and wear your confidence to slay. It is time for you to shine, so go on and grab the attention that you deserve!

plus size models_illustration

Image: Dall·E/StyleCraze Design Team

Frequently Asked Questions

Who was the first curvy model?

Emme, whose birth name is Melissa Owens Miller, is believed to be the first curvy model who has been able to grab mainstream commercial success.

Is it hard to become a plus-size model?

Just like all professions, being a plus-size model may be challenging. But with hard work, dedication, and thorough knowledge of the domain, one can surely rock as a plus-size model.

Who is the first Indian plus-size model?

Tinder Badhesha became the first plus-size Indian model in America. She has been featured in various international brand campaigns and is a well-recognized face in the fashion industry.

Do plus-size models wear shapewear?

Some plus-size models also use body enhancement products like shapewear, padding, and tummy tuckers. It can also be a personal preference of the model if they want to embrace their natural curves.

Key Takeaways

  • Plus-size models are reshaping, diversifying, and challenging stereotypes by defying norms and bringing inclusivity into the fashion scenes.
  • Some of the most popular plus-size models in the world include Ashley Graham, Precious Victoria Lee, Danika Brysha, Tabria Majors, Jessica Leahy, etc.
  • The ideal requirements to become a plus-size model are: Size 12-14; age 18-22; height 5’9” – 6”; waist 10” less than the hips.

Beauty is to be celebrated in all shapes and sizes. This video showcases the top 10 plus-size models who are making waves in the fashion industry. Watch this video to be inspired by the beauty that redefines standards.
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