Last night marked the premiere of the new EPIX documentary Straight/Curve, a film looking into the influencers working hard to redefine modern beauty standards and promote body diversity. The evolution and creation of inclusive mainstream beauty and body diversity is a topic firmly rooted in today’s zeitgeist; and it’s a conversation in which influencers like Jennie Runk are keen on being involved.
Runk is a plus-size model who often advocates for gay women like herself; however, she’s now making it clear that LGBTQ rights are far from the only cause close to her heart. After attending the premiere for the body positive documentary, she took to Instagram to make a powerful statement about her identification as a plus-size woman, one who is set on using her platform to encourage the acceptance of bodies of all types — particularly by the companies that make the clothes we wear.
“I am a proud, plus size woman. I’m on the smaller side of plus, so I can usually fit into the largest straight sizes as well as the smallest plus sizes when shopping, but I recognize that that’s a privilege many women don’t have,” she writes.
Although Runk’s identification as a plus-size woman is not new, the way in which she illustrates herself as a figure that falls in between plus and straight sizes highlights a particularly under-discussed narrative; shouldn’t brands be size inclusive? Is “plus” a clothing label that we need at all?
Runk tells her followers that while she has a choice when it comes to fitting into plus or straight sizes, she recognizes that others don’t. Then she confirmed her dedication to the cause of size inclusivity by reaffirming her commitment to body inclusivity.
“I know that many of my fans and followers can only shop in plus sizes, and I care about each of you and your experiences,” she continues. “As a model, I have a responsibility to use my platform to advocate for body diversity and lead by example. I have control over which brands get to share my limelight, and I’m holding myself accountable. Therefore, I’m making a conscious decision to support brands that are size inclusive.”
Runk’s commitment to only wearing brands that are size inclusive seems to be a direct result of her involvement in the documentary, which celebrates all spectrums of body diversity, rather than focusing on solely the divergence between plus and petite. Runk does not fit neatly into the applied labels and she’s strong to understand, and affirm, that other people don’t either.
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