@sonnyturner___ / Instagram

Sonny Turner reveals the hidden pressures of being a size 16 model in the fashion industry

“Take up space my queens.”

12 Mar 2019

If there's a conversation to be had about the power of positive representation in the fashion industry, we're here for it. From Ashley Graham speaking out about diversity in beauty, to the first Polynesian model gracing the pages of Sports Illustrated Swimsuit, we reckon spreading messages around body neutrality - whether on social media or the catwalk - is worthy of recognition.

Enter Sonny Turner, a 20-year-old model from Birmingham who has absolutely zero time for the strict beauty standards imposed upon women.

In an interview with , the size 16 beauty spoke out about the intense pressures of being a plus-size model in fashion.

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“Even within the plus-size industry there’s still pressure to look a certain way, and a preference to be hourglass," the student explained. "You can be fat but not too fat and you can be plus-size, but you've still got to have a flat stomach."

Turner, who is signed to Milk Model Management, took aim at the misguided perception that plus-size models lead unhealthy lifestyles.

"I’ve still got to be cautious and watch what I eat, and I still have to go to the gym,” she said. "I think the misconception is that we’re all unhealthy but if I was, I wouldn’t be able to do this job."

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The model, who is a fierce feminist and advocate of the body positivity movement, also revealed that when she first started modelling, brands would ask her to wear extra body-padding to enlarge her size 12 figure to plus-size.

"It was an open thing people used to talk about it and say “can you pad up twice?," she explained. "I was a size 12 and it would make me look a size 16, which is the size I am now. Which is just like crazy."

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The British-born beauty frequently takes to Instagram to spread her message of body-positivity, encouraging her fans to defy conventional beauty standards by practicing self-love and acceptance.

"Take up space my queens,” she wrote in a recent post. "We will not allow them to starve us, control us, distract us from what’s really important, or destroy our self esteem anymore."

Can we get an 'Amen' up in here?