Plus-size Asian model Natalie Nootenboom doesn’t just want to be known as the niece of popular DJ Steve Aoki — she hopes to redefine the way people perceive beauty.
The 16-year-old signed with model management Muse as they help her use modeling as a platform to dismantle beauty stereotypes.
Nootenboom admitted that she grew up to be “taller, bigger, more awkward”
than what people expected her to be, according to Huffington Post
. However, that didn’t stop the plus-size model to use her modeling as means to inspire others by making the industry more diverse and inclusive.
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“We’re all different. We can’t build a mold and expect people to all fit that mold,” Nootenboom added. The 16-year-old wants to break the stereotype of “petite, cute and skinny” Asian girls by introducing more diversity to the modeling scene, something that she believes goes “beyond ethnicity and size.”
In an interview with Billboard
, the teen model explained that size doesn’t have to be a factor in determining beauty. “We just all need to empower each other of any size and say, ‘You know what? You’re beautiful, no matter if you gain weight or lose weight.’ I hope we can really capitalize diversity,”
It’s safe to say that Nootenboom is brimming with ambition as she hopes to be more than just a model by aspiring to be a musician and novelist at the same time. In fact, the plus-size model is already writing her first fiction novel about women empowerment which focuses on overcoming trauma and beauty ideals.
Nootenboom also wants to form her very own female metal band where she hopes to incorporate her “deep vocals”. The aspiring musician has also showcased her diversity by taking on different genres as well and has already worked with electronic band The Hype.
A force to be reckoned with in modeling, music, and media at just 16? There’s no telling what else Nootenboom could accomplish next.