It's been a tough road for plus size beauty Tess Holliday. Ever since she made history by being the "largest" model to land a major modeling contract at size 22, the internet has had a lot to say about it. Tess isn't letting any negativity get in her way, though, in fact, she's using it as fuel for her body positive #effyourbeautystandards movement, and it even landed her the cover of People magazine's latest issue.
Tess told People she tried to get into plus-size modeling more than 14 years ago. "Nobody was interested. I got one call back and they said, 'Look, you have a pretty face, but you're too short and you're too big.'" Today, her deal with MiLK Model Management has landed her campaigns with Torrid and Benefit Cosmetics–and she's just getting started.
Inside the issue, we get to see a full shot of Tess in a Chubby Cartwheels black lace bodysuit paired with platform heels, which she purposely picked to show off her body. "I think if someone doesn't look at an image and feel something, you haven't done your job. Whether it's negative or positive, it should evoke something in them," she told the mag. "There is no one way to be a woman, or to be beautiful. We all deserve a place. I believe this with all my heart. While modeling is my career and my family is vitally important to me, I have this passion inside of me to help other women feel confident and comfortable in their bodies, regardless of their size or what society tells them is beautiful. It’s like a calling. "
"I get the most unbelievable letters and emails from women every day," Tess said. "They are so honest and heartfelt. They tell me how my being willing to be out there and tackle the unrealistic notions that our society has of beauty has changed their lives–sometimes has saved their lives. It is daunting. But I see myself in all of them. My life has changed in the best way and I know the best is yet to come. If it can happen to me, it can happen to everyone."
To see her shoot in action, peep the video above, and to read more of the interview, head on over to People.com.