Ashley Graham, new Sports Illustrated cover girl, spoke out against the term ‘plus-sized’ during a panel at SXSW in Austin, Texas.
“I think the word ‘plus-sized’ is totally outdated,” she said during the interactive panel “Acceptance Revolution: Fashion’s New Body,” according to the Austin American-Statesman.
Graham is a size 16 and often labeled as a “plus-sized” model. Her distaste for the labeling of models by their size is clear and shared by many. “Plus-sized” typically starts at a size 8, which is a shocking fact considering the average clothing size of an American woman is between a 12-14.
“It shouldn’t be about labels. I don’t want to be called a label, I want to be called a model,” said Graham according to People.
Graham made her modeling debut in the 2015 Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue, in an ad for a plus-sized swimwear brand. She was later made the cover girl of Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue in 2016.
Truly speechless!!! This cover is for every woman who felt like she wasn’t beautiful enough because of her size. You can do and achieve anything you put your mind to. Thank you so much to the entire @si_swimsuit team! I’m so excited to be a part of your family. I love you all!!! #siswim #beautybeyondsize
A photo posted by A S H L E Y G R A H A M (@theashleygraham) on
Graham hopes her work in the modeling industry will help women become more comfortable with their bodies.
“As a body activist, I want to tell women to not be totally subjected to the beauty standards around you,” she said.