The plus size market has definitely expanded as more brands are listening and becoming more size inclusive. On the beauty front, the make up scene seems to still be lagging behind though there have been a few exceptions like plus size model Ashley Graham being signed to a major campaign deal with make-up brand Revlon, Marquita Pring and Sabina Karlsson’s feature in a diverse campaign for L’Oreal and a few others, it still isn’t nearly enough.
For Marie Southard Ospinaplus, who is a writer, editor, & creative consultant for Bustle.com, it all began with the M.AC. campaign featuring plus size model Luzmaria Vargas from California for their MACnificent Me campaign shoot along side other regular sized models. She thought to her self, ‘this model looks like me’, with round, cherubic features looking magnificent in her photos, and wondered if that was the turning point.
In Ospina’s words: “Although I’ve long loved the creativity and access to experimentation that the world of beauty can offer, that world unfortunately hasn’t always seemed to love me — or the idea of my body, at least — back. Finding a plus size face when searching through beauty editorials and ads online, in magazines, or at brick and mortar shops isn’t just rare: It’s damn near impossible.”
Marie Southard Ospina decided to take the bull by the horns, teaming up with makeup artist Alexandra Clark of Golden Axe Makeup, body positive photographer Paddy McClave, and Fenty Beauty, Rihanna’s makeup line known for its commitment to diversity and 40 foundation shades. Working with five UK-based plus size models, Sharon Davies of Rad Fat Feminist, Dennetta McKain of Livin’ Phat Livin’ Large, Em Smyth of Terrible Tumbles, Mayah Camara, and Tara Louise they did a beauty campaign photo shoot with the theme, ‘Alt-glam’ representing femininty and glamour.
Marie Southard Ospina: For me, their faces serve as a reminder that fat babes can rock any beauty look, no matter how esoteric, out-there, or timelessly chic. Theirs are faces that will no doubt be relatable to much of the 67 percent of American women who wear plus sizes, many of whom are also buying makeup. Theirs are faces for change.