Tess Holliday is not another ordinary name you’ll hear in the fashion industry. Tess Holliday, also known as Tess Munster, is the largest plus size model to be signed to a mainstream modeling agency. She is a 29 years old american plus size model, based in Los Angeles. Her road to fame was not all roses and teddy bears, she had to deal with some big obstacles.


Tess Holliday

Holliday was born and raised in Mississippi, USA. She was bullied for her weight and pale skin during her school years, so she decided to leave school at the age of 17 after she earned her GED.

At the age of 15, Holliday auditioned at a casting call for plus size models in Atlanta, Georgia, where she was told she would be lucky to do print advertisements or catalog work because she was too short and big. Her height is only 1.65 m (5 ft.5 in) and her weight is 120 kg (260 lb).

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Tess Holliday

So Holliday decided to relocate to Seattle, where she stayed for two years and worked as a makeup artist, head makeup artist, hair stylist and creative director at fashion shows.

She moved back to Mississippi to give birth to her son, after a repeated relocation to Seattle, she finally decided in 2010 to move to Los Angeles, the city of angels, where dream come true.

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Tess Holiday

Her move to Los Angeles helped her gain confidence and in 2011,at the age of 24,while working as a receptionist at a Los Angeles dental office, she became a professional model.


She responded to ‘House of Dreams Model Search’ by Torrid and was accepted. At the same time, A&E chose her to be the face of their documentary television series Heavy, where people who suffer from severe obesity talk about their weight loss efforts. After being discovered online.she became the face of the television show and was on an advert that ran nationwide and on billboards across the country.

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Tess Holliday

Holliday has been featured on “fatshion” blogs, she models accessories and plus size clothing lines, and was contacted to audition for Vh1′s The Big Girls Club.

She has modeled for Domino Dollhouse, SWAK, Jessica Louise Clothing, Evil Pawn Jewelry, Black Cat Bikinis, Empress Lingerie, Vintage Box 1947, Batcakes Couture, Em & Sprout and various other independent designers.  She has also shot a campaign for Benefit Cosmetics, worked with David LaChapelle, and featured in Vogue Italia.

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Tess Holliday

Last year, Holliday quit her day job to pursue her modeling career full-time.

In May 2014, a video was uploaded on Vimeo called #everyBODYisflawless, which featured Holliday and fellow plus-size fashion bloggers and models Gabi Gregg and Nadia Aboulhosn lip-synching and dancing to Beyonce’s 2013 song “Flawless”. In September of that year, she was interviewed by Jacob Soboroff and Meghan McCain on TakePart Live.

#everyBODYisflawless from gabifresh on Vimeo.

Holliday also self-describes as a “body positive activist”. In 2013, she started her #effyourbeautystandards movement on Instagram. The movement shows women that they do not have to be a certain size to love their body (big or small) and that their size should not dictate their fashion choices.She also talks at public events about body confidence.Since 2010, she has gained over 624,000 followers on Facebook and 308,000 followers on Instagram. She likes to take selfies and post then online so the entire world would know how gorgeous she looks today.

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Tess Holliday

In January 2015, London-based modeling agency, Milk Model Management, announced that they had signed Holliday to their plus-size division, Curves. They declared that Holliday had become the largest plus-size model of her size and height to be signed to a mainstream modeling agency, and the first Curve model above a size 20.

Holliday is an inspiration to many women across the globe, with her great attitude she shows the world, that the industry of fashion doe’s not belong only to those who have a jeans size of maximum 36… Perhaps she is far from your too-typical towering, slender fashion or beauty model. But her looks, perspective, and charisma make her nothing short of electric in this industry.

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