“I refuse to feel ashamed and upset on a daily basis for not meeting your ridiculous, unobtainable beauty standards, whilst you sit at a desk all day…”
In the United States, British model Charli Howard is a size 2, which translates to a 6 in the U.K. By any reasonable standards of health and beauty she’s clearly underweight. Recently, she was labeled “too big” and “out of shape” by her modeling agency. Fed up with the (unnamed) agency’s “ridiculous, unobtainable beauty standards,” she promptly quit and did so by posting a scathing open letter on Facebook. After the post, she was immediately picked up by Muse Models, an agency that she says “celebrates different shapes and ethnicities.”
Here’s the full transcript of her post:
Here’s a big FUCK YOU to my (now ex) model agency, for saying that at 5’8” tall and a U.K. size 6-8 (naturally), I'm "too big" and "out of shape" to work in the fashion industry.
I will no longer allow you to dictate to me what’s wrong with my looks and what I need to change in order to be “beautiful” (like losing one fucking inch off my hips), in the hope it might force you to find me work.
I refuse to feel ashamed and upset on a daily basis for not meeting your ridiculous, unobtainable beauty standards, whilst you sit at a desk all day, shovelling cakes and biscuits down your throats and slagging me and my friends off about our appearance. The more you force us to lose weight and be small, the more designers have to make clothes to fit our sizes, and the more young girls are being made ill. It's no longer an image I choose to represent.
In case you hadn’t realised, I am a woman. I am human. I cannot miraculously shave my hip bones down, just to fit into a sample size piece of clothing or to meet ‘agency standards’. I have fought nature for a long time, because you've deemed my body shape too “curvaceous”, but I have recently began to love my shape. I don't have big boobs, but my bum is ok smile emoticon plus, a large majority of my clients are ok with this.
And anyway, let's face the facts: when I was 7 and a half stone, I still wasn't thin enough for you. When I went to the gym 5 hours a week, you still weren't finding me work. I can't win.
Ironically, I do love modelling - the people I’ve met, the places I've visited and I am proud of the jobs I've done. I will continue to do it, but only on my terms. My mental and physical health is of more importance than a number on a scale, however much you wish to emphasise this.
Until (and if) an agency wishes to represent me for myself, my body & the WOMAN I’ve become, give me a call. Until then, I’m off to Nandos.