With the launch of the #droptheplus movement and many plus models stating that they do not want to be called “plus size“, it’s refreshing to hear a model say that she embraces the term and understands why the term is used.
The 18-year-old model who is signed to Wilhelmina, is the first plus size model to grace the cover of Women’s Running Magazine and it is an move that has not gone unnoticed. The cover has since gone viral and Erica Jean has been making the rounds, talking to various media outlets about her love for running, her modeling career and how she is still on her journey to body acceptance, one day at a time.
During a recent interview with Seventeen Magazine, Erica was asked how she felt about being called a plus size model and she replied:
“It’s not meant to be a derogatory word. It’s a business term. I think people feel “plus size” is a bad word because of how it’s viewed in stores. Plus clothes are often segregated, pushed to the back corners. But it isn’t a bad word, just a description. There are male modeling agencies and now a transgender modeling agency. They are just descriptions of types of models. That’s not a negative thing. If a client is looking for a size 2 model with dark brown hair, that isn’t going to be me. But if they’re looking for a plus size model, I’m here.”
Not only does Erica embrace the term “plus size” but she also embraces becoming a role model overnight:
“I feel fabulous! It’s really exciting that I have this platform, because I never expected myself to have that kind of power. Inspiring people is making me feel really fulfilled.”
About her journey to body acceptance:
“I’m not always as confident as my pictures make me seem! It’s interesting because I still have a long way on my path. I’m growing with everyone following me. It’s making me feel really good to be able to help so many people and feel better about myself at the same time. When I first started modeling I was a size 12, and now I’m a size 16. I feel healthy but know that I’m most comfortable as a 14. Even people who are extremely confident have things they’re figuring out. It’s a journey towards self acceptance.”