With how much hate there is on social media these days, it’s understandable why Ashley Graham pays little to no attention to the negativity. But even she can’t filter out everything. On Thursday, while scrolling through Instagram, Graham discovered that someone was claiming that she wasn’t a “real model” because of her size. She took the opportunity to shut the troll down and school critics on why there’s no definition for what a “real model” is.
On her Instagram story, Graham posted screenshots from an Instagram user who compared her body, as well as those of other curvy models, to the bodies of Victoria’s Secret models, such as Miranda Kerr and Alessandra Ambrosio. The pictures, which were placed side by side, also included the words “real model” over the pictures of the Victoria’s Secret models and “fat model” over the photos of the curvy models.
After reposting the troll’s Instagrams, Graham shared two videos in which she explained to her followers why there are no requirements for a “real model.” “I know I’m being a little petty by posting these stupid photos of somebody who wrote ‘real model’ and ‘fat model,’” Graham said. “But I will let you know that nothing defines what a real model or a fat model or a fake model is.
She continued by addressing aspiring models who might feel reluctant to pursue a career in modeling because of comments that they’ve heard about their weight of physical appearance. She ended her message by telling her followers to ignore the haters and pursue their dreams regardless.
“Your weight, your skin, your hair, your religious background. None of that determines whether you are a real model or not, so all those girls out there who have dreams and hopes, keep fighting for them and don’t let all the losers on Instagram stop you,” Graham said.
Though there is still a lot of progress to be made, the fashion and modeling industries have made tremendous strides toward diversity. Graham’s point echoes the progress: There is no definition or requirement for what a “real model” is. Anyone is and can be a model. As for trolls, they can take a hike.