I can never get enough inspiration.
In fact, I crave it each and every day. When you meet Faith Costa, you instantly feel a wave of love and a sense of eagerness to hear her fascinating story. So, I had to share it with you, my Plus Model Magazine Family.
Natasha: What are three words you would use to describe yourself?
Faith: I’d have to say I’m determined, devoted, and fearless.
Natasha: Tell me your story. How did you become a model, artist and social media influencer?
Faith: I have been an artist for as long as I can remember. Ever since I was a little girl, I knew that art was my passion. As I grew a bit older, I always wanted to find new ways to express myself and use art in other aspects of my life. I suppose that’s where my love for fashion came from. The textures, colors and designs were always art to me. I always secretly wanted to model, but I never thought it was an option for me for one reason or another. That was until a little less than two years ago, when I made my Instagram account. I made my account and didn’t tell anyone about it. At the time, I didn’t really understand how social media really worked and thought it would be a place for me to publicly, yet still privately, post anything I wanted. I wanted to post my plus size fashion, mental health, and my journey with body positivity, almost as a sort of journal for myself. A week later, I gained more than a thousand followers. I had no idea that by simply doing something for myself, even as mundane as it might seem, could put me on the path to change my life. After about 6 months, I started getting into fashion blogging and working with different brands and companies, hence where the social media influencing came into play. Not too long after that, I decided to do something else for myself. I was finally learning more about the plus size fashion world and saw an open call for model search. Again, I didn’t tell anyone, but I applied. On my 23rd birthday (last year) I got the email that I had been selected. Ever since taking those first few steps for myself, creating my Instagram page, applying to the model search, and going to a few fashion events, I knew I had to do what I am doing now. I had to model. I had to continue making my art and I had to see where this wonderful industry could take me. I know I have a long way to go, but I think I’m off to a pretty decent start.
Natasha: When did you decide that you wanted to make a career out of your passion?
Faith: I’ll never forget the exact night I decided I needed to be in this industry and needed to figure out how to turn this passion into a career in some form. It was at the 2016 Golden Confidence pool party. It was the first “plus size/body positive” event I had ever attended or even heard of, for that matter. I went, and literally had one of the best nights of my life. I got to meet the most incredible people. I felt confident and beautiful and surrounded by the most positive and supportive trailblazers I had ever met, from models, to bloggers, to magazine editors and photographers all in this “Plus Size Industry.” I went home that night, I sat with my parents and I cried. I cried because I was so overwhelmingly happy. That was the night I said out loud to my Mom and myself, “This is where I need to be. This is what I am going to do with my life.”
Natasha: Did you know you were going to become a social media influencer?
Faith: I had absolutely no idea that I was going to become a social media influencer. I remember after I finally told a few friends about my Instagram, my one good friend and I would joke that someday I would be one of those girls on Instagram, who got to try out all of the best brands and talk about products, makeup and fashion. We joked because we didn’t actually think it was ever possible or attainable to the average person. I love working with different brands. I love advertising and promoting products that I genuinely enjoy and think others will benefit from as well. I feel honored when brands want to collaborate with me because that means they are choosing me to help represent their brand by joining both of our images together. I still can’t process that what I do for a living, are things I thought were never possible. I’ve never been so happy to prove myself wrong.
Natasha: What has been the biggest lesson you have learned in your career so far?
Faith: The biggest lesson I’ve learned in my career I think, has been that nothing is impossible. I always thought my life had to have limitations. I thought that I couldn’t possibly have the life I wanted because only very select “one in a million” people got to have it. It has been one of the greatest lessons of my life, to have learned that I can do anything I set my heart AND mind to. I wanted to be an artist, so I became an artist. I wanted to become an influencer, so I figured out how to. I wanted to model, so I put myself out there and made it happen. Dreams are attainable. It takes time and struggle, but it will happen if you make it and don’t ever give up. I’ve fallen down too many times in my life to count, but I like to think that all those times getting back up were steps to get to where I am now.
Natasha: What advice do you have for other women looking to pursue their passions as a career?
Faith: Honestly it might sound silly, but I always say “Just do it.” Don’t think about anything other than what it is you want to do and JUST DO IT. If you truly love it, there is no reason you can’t. Whether you want to create, write, serve, build, lead, anything… you can. Try to eliminate all fear and worries, though it’s easier said than done. Know that it might not be easy but know that the worst that can happen is that it might not work out the way you imagined the first time, but that only means it’s just meant to happen a different way. Don’t ever stop fighting for your dreams and your passions. Don’t give up on the life you are meant to live. Your passions are worthy of being lived, because without passion, what is the purpose of life? You can turn your passions into your career. Remember you are a strong, passionate, empowering, intelligent and fierce woman. Just do it. You deserve to do it. You can do it.
Natasha: Are there resources you turn to support your business?
Faith: I owe it to Dressing Room 8 for supporting me and guiding me to help turn MY passions into MY career from day one. In addition, I always know that I can count on fellow plus models and businesses that I work with to always support new and upcoming endeavors of mine, just as I support theirs.
Natasha: When dealing with the ups and downs of life, what keeps you motivated to keep moving forward?
Faith: Getting through tough times is always hard. I’ve had my fair share of ups and downs and I’ve always looked for a magical answer to make things better. However, over the years I’ve found there’s one thing that always helps me stay motivated, and that is my family. My family is my number 1 support system, strongest inspiration, and most devoted motivators. They are the foundation of my life and help me in every way they can to make my life a good one. They have been by my side through the worst of times and helped me get through them so we can celebrate the good times. Everyone needs a strong support system in their life. Whether it’s family, friends, a coach or a therapist, having help is not a weakness. The motivation to continue to thrive and push forward has to come from you, but a nudge from loved ones (or whatever form of support you have) always makes wanting to get through the tough times worth it, and that’s all the motivation I need…to work hard and thrive for not only myself, but for my family as well.
Natasha: Are there upcoming projects that you would like to share
Faith: Yes! I have a ton of upcoming projects and events that I can’t share at this very moment, but I encourage everyone to keep an eye out on my social media for updates! For now, I can share that I have a few very fun blog posts coming up that I know everyone will enjoy. I am also working on building my body positive illustration collection, so if you’d like to, you can follow my art account on Instagram (@faithcosta_originalartwork) or simply visit my website at http://www.faithcosta.com.
Also, for anyone looking for a fun body positive event this summer, I am one of a few ambassadors for the Plussizemeplz Swim Soiree that will happen on August 12th in Philadelphia! I hope everyone will come out for a night of fashion, food, fun, and lots of curvy networking! For more information, please go to www.plussizemeplz.com! Hope to see you there!
Natasha: What tips do you have for having success on Instagram?
Faith: I have found that a few things help with Instagram success.
1) Include relevant hashtags in your posts AND use them! By use them, I mean literally click the hashtag and see everyone else who is using it as well! It’s a great way to find other people who are doing similar things to you and make connections.
2) Be an active follower. Make sure to actually read what people are writing, join in on trending campaigns, like and comment as much as possible!
3) Make sure what you are posting is authentically you. People are following you for a reason, so make sure to stay true to yourself! Your uniqueness is what will help you thrive. It’s what draws people in and makes people want to engage with you and your brand.
Natasha: What are three things people don’t know about you?
#1: I went to a very, very small private high school in Philadelphia where my graduating class was only 15 people (56 kids in the entire school, 8-12th grade).
#2: I’ve always secretly wanted to be a standup comedian.
#3: My favorite movie is Funny Girl because I feel like I relate to “Fanny Brice” on a very real, bittersweet level.
Faith is a hard-working reminder to us ALL that we control whether we make our dreams come true or not. If you want something, just go out and get it.
Now, I ask you, are you going to go out and achieve your dreams?