Tess Holliday wears many hats. Wife, mom, model, feminist and now author. She’s got a new book, The Not So Subtle Art of Being a Fat Girl, which is out NOW!
I’ve been a fan of Tess from her early days of social media. She is ONE CONFIDENT HOT MAMMA. She juggles two kids, a blossoming career and a lot of hate on social media. Tess opened up to me about how she handles it all…one post at a time.
On getting hate on social media: “Two kids and traveling balancing your career and hearing everyone on social media that your never with your older son…you never post pictures of him…and I am like cause he’s almost 12 and he doesn’t want to be on the internet…also he was right behind me when I posted that selfie…but people are so judgmental.”
On how she handles hate on social media: “I usually say fuck them you can’t worry about what people say…. they are going to make fun of you somehow…if its not my size then its like wearing too much makeup or showing too much skin and being too fat. Sometimes I feel like they are saying stuff on my page homophobic or offensive then I step in…but if they are just being trolls then I let them…because I just don’t care and I can’t let a good moment be wasted… because people are being mean to me online…I just let them talk it pushes my numbers.”
On why she wrote her book:“The most so subtle art of being a fat girl loving the skin your in.” Tess says, “I wanted to write a book for awhile…i didn’t want it to be d list celebrity write a book about my life. I wanted it to be something that was going to help others… I wanted it to be at the right time…i actually started the process three years ago ….of trying to figure it out, i decided the timing wasn’t right so i put it on the shelf, no pun intended…and i picked it back up and i started writing it in October when my baby was a few months old. i wanted to write something that would help a to of people but I had a lot of life advice so why not put it all in one place.”
Tess on her mother getting shot:Tess got personal about how her mom got shot when she was only 10 years old. Tess said that she turned to food and emotional eating after the traumatic incident. “Most people don’t believe me…when I was 10 my phone was shot in the head twice by her soon to be fiancé…she was left for dead…my mom survived she had to learn how to walk and talk again, she is partially paralyzed still…if you looked at my mom you would never know anything happened to her. I have to help her or someone has to help her walk steps…she can’t feel crack on sidewalk…she’s in constant pain. She splits her time between our house and then with my grandparents she kind of looks after them.” Tess said when her mother got shot, she was split up from her brothers. Tess also said how she has a strained relationship with her father.
In regards to the word, “fat” Tess said she wants to destigmatize it: “I wanted to destigmatized the word because that word hurt me a lot as a kid…but honestly we all deal with stuff the best way we can…sometimes its not the best. We are all trying to survive. I don’t feel bad for the fact that I ate as a kid to deal with the feelings I was feeling. Because I probably wouldn’t be sitting today.”
Tess on wanting more designers to use plus size models: “Its exploded, I walked as part of fashion week, I had friends walking fashion week all around the world. Your seeing major designers making clothes for plus size woman…still nothing passed a size 14…iam waiting…call me. When I was a kid I would read all these fashion magazines, and I would be able to wear all these high end designers. I never thought I would be able to because I didn’t have all the money. Now that I am doing well…I want to be able to buy their stuff…i still can’t…its incredibly frustrating to be left out of that world…considering that I am in the fashion industry.”
Tess her life as a model: “The past three weeks I’ve been home for 3 days so its been tough…my baby has already been on 30 flights…but I stopped bringing him to me because its incredibly hard. I am leaving him home with my best friend slash nanny and its quite challenging being away from him.”
Tess on how she’s built her confidence: “It’s definitely been a process not something that happened overnight…I’ve had my moments…I was complaoingin today..I’ve been a brat today my husband was saying…my face is breaking out …you just have moments where your not always going to feel good…i just need to remind myself that on these days where i don’t feel good its not me or my body…Its probably the fact that I am hot or tired or rundown or stress from kids or work..instead of internalizing that and making that about myself and my size and whatever I try to remind myself that there is nothing wrong with me I just need to be nicer to myself…So that all came from modeling and finding clothes that made me feel good and having people around me to support me and understand that sometimes life is hard and sometimes I need to take a chill pill and relax. I need to be kinder to myself.”
Tess on all her rejections as a model: “I still get no’s all the time..iam not always right for all the campaign and sometimes people can’t afford me. I don’t base what I do on money which makes my job more fun and I love what I do.If i don’t get the job then I just wasn’t right for it…if one person succeeds and all succeed…its nice to be my size and work in the industry no matter what I am doing.”
Tess on representation: “It’s important to see represenation, visibility. diversity…i get a lot of crap cause people are like your fat and your telling other people to be fat…and I am like no I am not I am telling people to love themselves…because if you don’t love yourself life is going to be so much harder.”
“In my book I have what we call Tess Holliday’s advice for life…the funny things Ive learned and some serious things Ive learned…saying I promote obesity is saying stevie wonder promotes blindness…I am not recruiting people to be fat, i am not selling tupperware or anything like that…dam just telling people to love yourself no matter what size you are…because once you love yourself…that means you take care of yourself in whatever way you can.”
Tess on her beauty secrets: “Now I am on a regime of getting facial once every two weeks…i don’t wear makeup usually at all, i don’t wear makeup when i fly…i wear hydrating masks when I fly… I did laser hair removal on my face because once i had kids…no one told me i had facial hair on my skin from my hormones..that was a fun surprise…i lost a little hair but its back now. My favorite stuff is skincare.. so I am obsessed with moisturizer and cleansing…ill try any serum someone gives me. i love skincare.”
“I love makeup, but if your not taking care of your skin, I drink a ton of water…then your makeup is not going to look fresh. Currently using mixture of tashca and dermologia.”
And her message to the world is pretty simple…BE NICE. “I draw inspiration from everyone, thats why we should all be nicer…the world is such a small place…and we treat each other with kindness. There’s a lot going on and I feel like besides writing the book I guess what I want people take out of it to love themselves but we should be using social media to help others especially marginalized groups and speak about things going on…theres a lot of crazy stuff going on now.”
Check out our amazing interview below and make sure to grab a copy of her book. TESS you are one inspirational woman and I am so happy for all your success.