This Photo Shoot of Plus-Size Asian Women is So Damn Perfect I’m Crying

plus size asian



Body positivity activist and coach Michelle Elman noticed that the fashion industry and plus-size community in the U.K. has routinely excluded Asian women, and decided to do something about it.

 

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There is something I’ve been wanting to get off my chest for a while. The U.K. plus size community exclude Asian women. It’s largely due to the fact that Asian women are always stereotyped as petite but plus Asian women exist, and we deserve to be represented. We are more so in America but in England it’s basically non existent. Go to most plus size brands’ Instagram and you won’t find a single Asian woman. Go to the plus size ranges of mainstream brands and again not a single plus Asian woman in their campaigns, on their website or even in the sponsored posts. Go to a plus-size event in London and it will likely be all white. Most white plus size influencers wouldn’t even be able to name a plus size Asian blogger or influencer in the U.K. Even when a white plus person talks about WOC, they continue to exclude Asian women from the conversation. The fact that I’m even using the term Asian women is ridiculous. Imagine a british person being asked to represent Germany. Chinese women are not interchangeable with Indian women for example. And we shouldn’t be asked to represent a whole continent, but to not represent an entire continent is worse. It shouldn’t be black women or Latinx women who work to change this – they are already marginalised, oppressed and discriminated against. It has to be white women. It’s your job to amplify the voices Asian women, and more broadly WOC. It’s your job to step down when agreeing to an all white panel. Same for an all white event or an all white blogger trip. You can’t call for diversity in terms of size and then claim to be colour-blind when it comes to race. Tag any U.K. Asian plus size pages below ⬇️ • Jacket: @shopmatalan (Gifted) Top: @asos_loves_curve Jeans: @simplybeuk

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“The U.K. plus size community exclude Asian women. It’s largely due to the fact that Asian women are always stereotyped as petite but plus Asian women exist, and we deserve to be represented,” Elman said on her Instagram.

Elman who is half-Chinese, noted that images of Asian women are non-existent on plus-size brand websites, campaigns, or even sponsored posts. Asian women who have been confined to an image of being petite, are often excluded from the conversation.

She teamed up with photographer Linda Blacker and created a truly inclusive photo shoot featuring plus-size Asian women of all sizes and skin tones.

 

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PLUS SIZE ASIANS EXIST As you all know I’ve been talking about the absence of Asians in adverts, campaigns and fashion in general so @lindablacker and I decided to team up on a little passion project. Look at how incredible these women look! Here’s to showing them what they are missing 💪🏽 Despite the absence in the media, asian is actually the largest ethnic minority in the U.K. Asians deserve to be represented. Asians deserve to be seen. And all Asians aren’t the stereotype of being small and petite. Being Asian is not one look. Being Asian is not one culture. Whilst even this shoot isn’t perfect representation, it shows just a small sample of the diversity within Asia. #AsianRepresentation • Thank you to all the wonderful women taking part and being my stunning models @nesslala @bishamberdas @saalene @kat_v_henry @minakumari.uk @simksandhu95 • This was such a personal project and I couldn’t have done it without @lindablacker. She came up with the idea when I was talking about asian representation earlier in the year and I wouldn’t trust anyone else to do it. She has always placed diversity at the forefront of her shoots and her talent is remarkable. This entire concept was her doing and I’m so grateful for everything you did to make this a reality!• Thank you also to @umberghauri and @hannah.shaikhup for the incredible makeup! It felt so complete to have the makeup artists also be Asian. We need just as much diversity behind the scenes on shoots as well!

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“PLUS SIZE ASIANS EXIST,” Elman declared in her caption. “Despite the absence in the media, asian is actually the largest ethnic minority in the U.K. Asians deserve to be represented. Asians deserve to be seen. And all Asians aren’t the stereotype of being small and petite.”

She reminds us that being Asian is not a monolith, and is not simply one culture, image, or size.

Elman and Blacker featured an amazing group of women:

Bishamber Das

 

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Kat Henry

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Mina Kumari

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Simsimma Sandhu

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Vanessa Sison

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Saalene Sivaprasad

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And last but not least:

Michelle Elman

 

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Elman expressed her excitement about how successful the photo shoot has been.

“I thought this was the perfect way to show the fashion industry what they are missing and demonstrate that Asian women are just as beautiful and fashionable as any other race and we deserve to be included,” Elman told HuffPost.

Featured images via Instagram /scarrednotscared

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