So, what truly is plus-size?

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Plus-size means different things to different people.

In the fashion industry, it is used to refer to models who are above a size 8, which is why many plus-size models may still seem smaller than you. This usage of the definition is disputed and steeped in controversy, with body positivity campaigners pointing out that most plus-size clothing ranges start from size 16, not sizes 10 and 12.

Several famous models have been labelled plus-size, including Kate Upton, Ashley Graham and Tess Holliday. It’s used less frequently in film and TV, but some actors have also been described as plus-size, such as Gabourey Sidibe and Melissa McCarthy.

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Left: Ashley Graham, Right: Tess Holliday

“Plus-size” is thought to have originated in the 1970s when modelling agencies began taking on models who did not conform to the standard size requirement in the industry. In 1978, a major US agency, Ford Models, started representing plus-size, leading onto the current “Curve” divisions within the modelling industry.

So why do some body positivity advocates reject the term plus-size? Some people find the term “plus-size” problematic because it is sometimes used to mean someone who is “larger than average”, which prompts the thorny question of what size you define as average. To add some perspective, in the UK the average size of a woman is dress size 16, so how can they be classed larger than average if they are the average size?

It’s why at The Luxe Nude, we are currently working hard to not only expand the size ranges of our products, but we are also searching for models of different shapes and sizes to show you how our products will fit you once purchased. We’re doing this because we want you to feel seen and adored when buying from our brand.

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