How to Become a Plus-Size Teen Model

By Damon Verial
Two plus-size teen model contestants at a competition.
Two plus-size teen model contestants at a competition.

Just as every body is unique, the specific routes into plus-size modeling are unique. Amanda Czerniawski, sociologist at Temple University and author of "Fashioning Fat: Inside Plus-Size Modeling," points out four routes to becoming a plus-size model. Though one of those routes is luck -- waiting to be found by a recruiter -- the other three are viable means for your teenage daughter.

Route 1: Get Fat

Czerniawski states that going from “standard modeling” to plus-modeling is the easiest route inside this industry. Thus, one option is to focus on becoming a model first, gaining weight and finally breaking into the plus-size modeling industry. If your daughter is already plus size, this method would require her to lose weight first. The question as to whether the extra dieting and exercise will be less troublesome than following routes 2 and 3 is a discussion you should have with your daughter.

Route 2: Leverage Her Abilities

Many models break into modeling from related industries, such as singing and acting. Not only will these extra talents help her portfolio, but they will also help her garner connections to people within the fashion industry. After all, fashion designers work closely with dancers, actors and even public speakers. If your daughter already has such a skill, step up her auditions -- if only for the sake of networking.

Route 3: Push Your Way In

If your daughter lacks performing experience, she might have to push her way into the plus-size modeling field through climbing the not-so-corporate ladder. Starting from scratch, your daughter will need to design a portfolio. A professional photographer and fashion consultant may be needed to help her put together a photo shoot that reveals her as an asset to the plus-size modeling industry. Her portfolio may be used to apply to auditions for plus-size models and other related work, such as callings for plus-size actors. Step by step, your daughter should gain the exposure needed to land her more consistent work.

Networking Is Working

No matter your preferred route, networking is all but required for the plus-size modeling industry. Ensure you get your daughter’s portfolio in the right hands by attending conventions and events for plus-size models. Use social networking to join groups and gain access to both local and national names in the plus-size modeling world.

About the Author

Having obtained a Master of Science in psychology in East Asia, Damon Verial has been applying his knowledge to related topics since 2010. Having written professionally since 2001, he has been featured in financial publications such as SafeHaven and the McMillian Portfolio. He also runs a financial newsletter at Stock Barometer.