How to Be a Plus Size Model
There is little doubt that the interest has grown in plus size models over the past couple of decades. Today, the demand for plus size models is stronger than ever thanks to the greater attention being paid by the fashion industry to women who wear larger sizes of clothing.
Although demand for plus size models has risen, the competition has also increased as well meaning that how to become a plus size model is just as demanding as ever. What follows is a guide in how to be a plus size model, how to make the most of your talents and how to maximize your opportunities in this field.
How to Become a Plus Size Model
The first step is that you need to meet the basic qualifications for being a plus size model. In essence, you must be of a certain height and wear dress sizes that are made for plus size women. There are a number of factors that plus size modeling agencies look for when finding new talent, so you will need to be as prepared as possible in order to start your career as a plus size model.
While you will not need a full portfolio when you are first breaking into this field, it is very helpful to have professionally done photographs that show off your natural beauty. A face shot and a full body shot in clothing that is flattering to your figure is generally good enough, just be sure that the photographs are as natural as possible and not too staged.
If you don’t have any good photographs of yourself, it is better to just to go to the plus size modeling agencies with nothing rather than poor photographs. If they see potential in you, they’ll take some professional photographs to see what you have.
- Contacting Plus Size Modeling Agencies
There are plenty of agencies out there, but you will want to do a bit of research before you start applying. This means checking out each plus size agency in your local area in terms of their reputation and status in the industry. As with all agencies, there is the potential for being scammed out of your money or not getting any opportunities. Plus, a proper agency will not charge you any fees for applying or signing up for their services.
- What Do Most Plus Size Model Agencies Look For?
Essentially, plus size models fall into a particular height and size category, though each agency might have their own standards that vary just a bit. Generally speaking, you should be roughly 5’ 8” to 6’ in height and wear a size 10 and up. If you are a little shorter or taller, that may not make much of a difference.
It’s important to have a proportional figure and shapely legs, so working out can be very helpful in presenting the type of figure that they want. In addition, there are different types of modeling that may have particular requirements.
- What are the Different Kinds of Modeling?
In how to be a plus size model, there are different type of modeling opportunities available. So while you may not be right for one, you could be more suited to another.
High Fashion: This is the most familiar type of modeling, generally speaking the model needs to be in their late teens and be close to the proper proportions. This is mostly associated with runway modeling.
Glamour: The requirements here are much looser because this is mostly photographic modeling used by many different magazines and outlets. Although this type of modeling is seen in promotional events and such.
Mature: Generally speaking this is for those over the age of 30 and they are used to showcase products or services of mature people.
Body Part: This is a specialty division of modeling where the hand, foot, neck, leg and such are highlighted. If you have a “perfect” body part with no veins or blemishes showing, then this may be the right type of modeling for you.
Fitness: A fitness plus size model needs to be in good physical condition. Fitness plus size models are often tall or muscular so they can show off different types of athletic wear.
- What Should be in My Demo Package?
You will need a few good photographs if possible, your contact information, measurements, any previous experience that you have had modeling and a list of interests. This is the basic information that modeling agencies use to help set you up for getting particular assignments. You may find that having a particular interest can lead to opportunities in modeling certain types of clothing.
When you are just getting started, you may find yourself at open calls which is similar to an audition. At these open calls, there will probably be dozens if not hundreds of people there with the same ambition as you, so don’t be intimidated. Remember, the better prepared you are for these open calls, the better your chances. However, if you don’t get selected do not take it personally, but instead see this as a learning experience so you can do better next time.
Listing of Plus Size Modeling Agencies that Take Unsolicited Submissions
You should start with the plus size agencies in your community first and ask if they are looking for new models without any solicitation. Here are some of the more popular plus-sized modeling agencies in the US.
Ford 12+ Division: Perhaps the best known with offices in different parts of the country.
Wilhelmina ten20 Division: Located in Los Angeles, this modeling agency has built a powerful reputation.
Goddess Models: Based in NYC, they focus on size 10+ for all types of commercial work.
Dorothy Combs Models: 10+ size category and up, many of the larger plus size models work here.
Irene Marie: Located in Miami, Florida, this groups has also built a fine reputation over the years.
For those wanting to know how to be a plus size model, it starts by getting a few photographs, presenting the right information and having a thick skin as you go from one modeling agency to the next until you get hired. Being persistent and following the guidelines can help you become a plus size model.
For a complete guide on how to start your modeling career, click the link on the right side at the top of this page.