These four daring women have challenged the 'one size fits all' phenomenon quite literally!

Fashion can be a lethal place to work in. In a world where trends are transient and beauty standards change rapidly, it is difficult for different kinds of bodies to co-exist. The rules of the game are already set and those who do not follow, do not get to play it. Unfortunately, there are preconceived beauty ideals that are set by society and the modelling agencies alike, which force women to look a certain way. Add to different mental and physical health conditions - bulimia, anorexia and anxiety that reportedly account for more deaths than physical inactivity! It is difficult, then, to break the mould and enter into the arena unarmed and with a trail of insecurities intact. We are talking about curvy models (as opposed to plus size) which is often known to have a derogatory connotation. “I think that when you use the word "plus-size," you're putting all these women into a category: "You don't eat well." "You don't work out." "You could care less about your body." "You're insecure." "You have no confidence," said Ashley Graham, one of the most celebrated curvy models in the world.

It is about time that we challenge the cookie-cutter body ideals and celebrate each body in its natural form. Sure, it could be difficult to hold your own, thanks to insensitive internet trolls and cyberbullying. But there are few women who have challenged the stigma attached to being “curvy” and have, in fact, celebrated their bodies as they are! Cheers to these 5 curvy models who explain the rise of curvy modelling in India and their tryst with it.

Varshita Thatavarthi

As an ode to women, Sabyasachi introduced a relatively curvy girl, who looked nothing like the other models he has featured before. The girl goes by the name of Varshita Thatavarthi who recently featured in the designer's ‘Charbagh’ collection. But this was no cakewalk for this beauty, it took Varshita five years and several failed auditions to finally be able to work with Sabyasachi. “It hasn’t been easy for me or anyone else I know who is my size in an industry that notoriously promotes body discrimination. I kept believing that somewhere, someone might accept me as it is and give me the confidence to be who I am. Then five years later, Sabya happened.” she said in an interview with Scoopwhoop. Soon after her Instagram followers, skyrocketed and she continues to inspire women through her inspirational posts.

Photo credits: Varshita Thatavarthi

Anjana Bapat

Mumbai-based Anjana Bapat’s story was not any different from Varshita’s. Growing up, she was always bullied for being a bit large, which made her terribly grumpy as a kid. This took a toll on her and gradually affected her teenage and early adult life too. Not just friends, even relatives body-shamed her immensely. But with a bit of help from her friends, she regained her confidence and gave her the first audition for ALL clothes wear brand and cracked it. She is an avid belly dancer too and has taken to social media to propagate body positivity and belly dancing.

Photo credits: Anjana Bapat

Tinder Badesha

Tinder Badesha on the contrary, had no connection with the glamour world. She was happily working in the tech industry in Silicon Alley when the recession hit, and she was laid off along with several others. She casually posed for a photographer to kill time and lo and behold, her photographs went viral on facebook, which, as dreamy as it sounds, landed her first modeling contract with an International agency! Since then, Tinder has modeled for international brands such as JC Penny and even Kohl’s and considers her journey as  a “calling from the universe” And while she still faces some sour faces, she continues to advocate self-care through her social media pages and is definitely a role model to young women who want to take up modelling as a career.

Photo credits: Tinder Badesha

Tanvi Ravishankar

Tanvi Ravishankar had always been comfortable with her body but it was always someone from the outside who told her that she was just not good enough. And she tried to fit into the mold by knocking of 35 kgs, but that didn’t guarantee happiness. Soon after, she started a blog, which advocated body positivity and even got a chance to walk as a curvy model for one of the designers in Lakme Fashion Week. That was it, even though she is regularly victimized by internet trolls, she has surely learned how to shut them down in a positive manner.

Photo credits: Tanvi Ravishankar

Kudos to you women, thanks for being an inspiration to one and all!

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