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The Top Five BBW of Modeling

Updated on January 17, 2017

The Top Five BBW of Plus Size Modeling

When you think of high fashion models, you probably think about beautiful women like the ones on "America's Next Top Model", or famous supermodels like Heidi Klum, Tyra Banks, Gisele Bundchen, Adriana Lima and Alessandra Ambrosio.

But there is a whole 'nother division of fashion models that look much more like your average woman, and they are getting more popular.

When you hear plus size, you think "big", but plus size modeling really has no clear height and size requirements, but the models must have a well-proportioned body.
The sizes they model can range from a missy 8 up to a size 32W and the models usually fall between five eight and six feet tall.

Some of the top modeling agencies have plus size divisions now like Wilhelmina 10/20, Curves and Ford 12 agencies.
And there are other agencies like Irene Marie, Agence Plus, Close Models and Goddess Models that do print modeling, fitness, fashion modeling jobs, commercials, and showroom modeling and that cater to plus size models.
There are also companies that sell plus size clothing like Torrid Plus Size Clothing and IGIGI clothing that use these models.

To give you an idea of what they look like, here are some of the famous BBW (Big Beautiful Women) of plus-size modeling, past and present.

The late Anna Nicole Smith
The late Anna Nicole Smith

1. Anna Nicole Smith

The late Anna Nicole Smith was born Vickie Lynn Hogan in Mexia, Texas, United States on November 28, 1967.

Early on in her career many thought that she would be the next Marilyn Monroe.

Unfortunately like Marilyn, her life ended tragically.

Anna passed away on February 8, 2007.

On February 17th, 2011, an opera based on her life, "Anna Nicole" debuted at London's Royal Opera House to a sold-out crowd.

It was so popular, there is talk about bringing it to the US.

Emme-plus size models
Emme-plus size models

2. Emme

Melissa Aronson (better known as Emme) was born in New York City in 1963, raised in Saudi Arabia and moved back to the US as a teenager.

One of the top plus-sized models in the world, Emme is also one of the highest paid.

She is also an author and has written several books.

True Beauty-Positive Attitudes & Practical Tips from the World's Leading Plus Size Model (1997), Life's Little Emergencies: Everyday Rescue for Beauty, Fashion, Relationships, and Life (2003), Morning Has Broken: A Couple's Journey Through Depression (2006) and What Are You Hungry For? (2007).

Crystal Renn
Crystal Renn

3. Crystal Renn

Crystal Renn was born in Miami Florida on June 18th, 1986.

She has done work for companies like Lane Bryant, Evans, Torrid, Vena Cava and Jean-Paul Gaultier.

Crystal is not only one of the leading plus-sized models, but like Emme, an author as well.

In 2009 she released "Hungry: A Young Model's Story of Appetite, Ambition and the Ultimate Embrace of Curves".

In 2011, Crystal starred in "Stand By", a fashion film by Jason Last.

She is now referred to as an ex plus size model.

Sophie Dahl
Sophie Dahl

4. Sophie Dahl

Sophie Dahl was born on September 15, 1977 in London, England.

She is the daughter of an actor and a writer, and her grandparents were Roald Dahl (Charlie and the Chocolate Factory) and actress Patricia Neal (The Day the Earth Stood Still, Breakfast at Tiffany's)

Although she is retired now, Sophie did work for magazines like Elle, Harper's Bazaar, Marie Claire and Vogue.

And like Emme and Crystal, she is an author and has written three books, The Man With the Dancing Eyes (2003), Playing with the Grown-Ups (2008) and a cook book, Miss Dahl's Voluptuous Delights (2009).

At the beginning of March 2011, Sophie and her husband Soul singer Jamie Cullum became parents to a little girl.

Lizzie Miller
Lizzie Miller

5. Lizzie Miller

When the September 2009 issue of U.S. Glamour came out and everyone saw the shot of Lizzie, she rose to fame quite quickly.

She appeared in an article about women who are comfortable in their own skin, and her picture ignited a firestorm both on the internet and the fashion world.

It seemed Glamour publishing a photo of a "less than perfect" body was more than some could stand, and an inspiration to others.

In March of 2011, Lizzie Miller was chosen as the OneStopPlus ambassador.

OneStopPlus is an online store for plus size clothing for full figured women sizes 12W to 44W.

Adele-sexy-hot-curvy
Adele-sexy-hot-curvy

And In A Related Story....

Adele Hits The Cover Of Cosmopolitan

A few months after Vogue got some heat for having Adele on the cover...just her face....the December 2011 issue of Cosmopolitan goes all out and puts the singer on their cover in a form fitting leopard dress!

So there!

In that issue of Vogue in an interview, Adele said:

"I've seen people where it rules their lives, who want to be thinner or have bigger boobs, and how it wears them down. And I don't want that in my life. I have insecurities, of course, but I don't hang out with anyone who points them out to me."

Australian Plus Size Model Penelope Benson
Australian Plus Size Model Penelope Benson

Australian Plus Size Model Penelope Benson Wants To Do Away With That Term

Australian Penelope Benson strides up to me backstage at the New Zealand Fashion Festival.

The black haired, blue-eyed beauty is a size 14 and considered a "plus-sized model" - although she tells me anything over a size 10 fits in to that category in the fashion world. She'd like to do away with the figure-defining term.

"It doesn't bother me, because I know the definition of it, but I think it still confuses a lot of woman out there ... it's kind of like a dirty word," says Sydney-based Benson.

Full Story

Plus Size Model Ashley Graham
Plus Size Model Ashley Graham

Plus Size Model Ashley Graham

Since I wrote this article back in 2010, more plus size models have gained popularity.
One in particular, Ashley Graham.
Ashley has not only done work for Lane Bryant, Elle Quebec, Vogue, Harper's Bazaar, Glamour and Latina, but Swimsuits For All featured her in their advertisement in the popular Sports Illustrated's annual swimsuit issue.

Plus-size model Ashley Graham is Getting Body Shamed for Weight Loss

Plus-size model Ashley Graham is getting body shamed for weight loss
Plus-size model Ashley Graham is getting body shamed for weight loss

Proving that you can't please everyone so you have to please yourself, plus-size model Ashley Graham is now getting body shamed for weight loss.
Internet trolls need to get a life.
Full story here

Fiona Falkiner

Fiona Falkiner - Beautiful Women
Fiona Falkiner - Beautiful Women

In 2015, Fiona Falkiner became the first ever plus size model to have a photo shoot in Maxim Australia.

Jakaliene Rivera

Jakaliene Rivera - Beautiful Women
Jakaliene Rivera - Beautiful Women

Born and raised in West Chester, New York, beautiful Latina Jakaliene Rivera was the winner of Tyra Banks fiercely real contest.

Plus Size Modeling Guestbook

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    • Phillyfreeze profile image

      Ronald Tucker 6 years ago from Louisville, Kentucky

      Hi Sabreblade,

      Your reference to BBW reminded of the annoucement by makers of Dove that they would no longer be featuring Plus Size models in their ad campaigns because research showed that real life full figure women did not particular care for such ads and their response was not favorable towards the ads that showed BBW wearing their under garments.

      I guess the millions of women who wear a size 12 or larger will remain the "silent majority".

    • MyCrazyAdventures profile image

      Melissa 6 years ago from Albuquerque, NM

      Interesting info Phillyfreeze69, I guess we all live in our own little bubbles and don't want to be reminded.

      Thanks for the info on BBW models Sabreblade. I knew about Emme and Anna but not the others.

    • PromptWriter profile image

      Moe Wood 6 years ago from Eastern Ontario

      Crystal is one of my favorite PS models although she's not very plus these days.

    • profile image

      Squidoo_Queen 5 years ago

      I would much rather see these healthy looking women any day of the week - Sophie has been known to drop weight drastically too. Great lens :)

    • thesuccess2 profile image

      thesuccess2 5 years ago

      You've got a good niche!

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      I think that they are normal for plus size, but the world needs to see larger size women modeling like the supermodels. large women are always the butt of every joke and the world will never see the beauty of our curves. I want to model, but I was told at one agency that there isn't a market for women of a much larger scale.

    • sweetstickyrainbo profile image

      sweetstickyrainbo 5 years ago

      nice, lovely ladies. I would like to see more lenses on this theme.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      me-yow! I like seeing "plus size" models in modeling.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      They really look great, never mind the Plus size.

    • profile image

      mnl7362 5 years ago

      In high fashion modeling, women are considered "plus-size" if they are over a size 4. But these are some beautiful plus-size women you have chosen. They are what I consider "real women". Great lens! :)

    • beckyf profile image

      beckyf 5 years ago

      Very interesting lens. :)

    • Diana Wenzel profile image

      Renaissance Woman 5 years ago from Colorado

      I'm happy to see beauty and form redefined by these women. Who gets to decide anyway what is beautiful and what is not? It should be each of us comfortable in our own skin. May we all embrace what is instead of some unrealistic idea about size 2 women. I mean, really, any size under about 8 is mythical for the majority of women. Appreciated this feature on plus size women.

    • Mistl profile image

      Mistl 5 years ago

      Great to see some focus on something besides super skinny models. Thumbs up from me! :)

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      fantastic motivation for the larger lady

    • niceman91 lm profile image

      niceman91 lm 5 years ago

      You bet they are plus sized :)

    • LouisaDembul profile image

      LouisaDembul 5 years ago

      They are all beautiful!

    • jadehorseshoe profile image

      jadehorseshoe 5 years ago

      Nice Lens!

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Well, the ladies look lovely, almost as if they would not even be Big Sized. Good topic, nice models, nice lens.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Always thought that there is too much emphasis on being too thin esp. in modelling industry. Nice to see some plus size models!

    • sockii profile image

      Nicole Pellegrini 5 years ago from New Jersey

      Lovely women, all of them!

    • entertainmentev profile image

      entertainmentev 5 years ago

      These women are beautiful! Wonderful lens :)

    • profile image

      kissesxox83 4 years ago

      some of these woman don't even look plus size, the one i consider is maybe adele, the others or just thick, but that's my opinion

    • fedoraphotograp profile image

      fedoraphotograp 4 years ago

      Very nice exploration of a branch of modeling few know about.

    • profile image

      thicklovebbw 4 years ago

      love thick bbw, start a date with them, thicklove.net is such a nice place

    • Starzz30 profile image

      Starzz30 4 years ago

      Cool Lens like the fact you made it about BBW models and not your typical tall and thin topics. Very good!! Starzz30

    • Starzz30 profile image

      Starzz30 4 years ago

      Loved it

    • profile image

      Boudja 3 years ago

      Nice

    • profile image

      Ash 8 months ago

      Ashley looks better hotter now

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