8 Things We Learned From Ashley Graham And Mona Kattan's Body Positivity Talk

Ashley Graham, Body Positivity, Mona KAttan, Model, Health and Wellbeing
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"I'm in the business of making women feel good about themselves"

In Dubai to launch her capsule collection for Marina Rinaldi and celebrate the brand's first store opening in the region, Ashley Graham joined Mona Kattan on stage for an exclusive talk on body positivity, social media responsibility and changing the future of the fashion industry.

On why Ashley Graham got into the industry...
"I didn't let the industry change me or let society change who I was and now I'm able to have conversations like this and try and change the world. The most meaningful part of modelling is the emails I get from young girls and the hugs I get from women. This is an emotional business. I'm in the business of making women feel good about themselves. I always hear people say, "I have to be perfect." Perfect doesn't exist. These women are striving for something that they'll never achieve."

 

On the word 'plus-size'...
"We don't introduce our skinny friends. I think these labels are ridiculous. What man comes in with a label? Women have so many labels put on them. Everything you say has an impact. Even things you say about yourself with impact you. Choose your words wisely."

On dealing with haters...
"Somebody once commented on my Instagram writing, "stop making fat look cool, you're going to kill someone." Then I also get people complaining when I work out because they think I'm trying to lose weight. You're never going to please everyone. Now I have an armor and a shield where their words don't hurt me."

On staying healthy and happy...
"It looks like I exercise all the time but I don't. I brought gym clothes with me on this trip and haven't worn them once. I go in waves; one week I'll work out loads and next week I won't do anything. It's about how I feel in the moment. I don't want to put rules on my body."

On the future of the fashion industry...
"I'm so glad the fashion industry is not just talking about curves anymore. They're actually doing something about it. We're seeing them on the runway, on the covers of magazines, in movies and I want to see more of that. I see women with hourglass figures everywhere and I always wonder why they're no represented in fashion. There never used to be curvy girls fronting beauty campaigns. Mascara doesn't have a size, foundation doesn't have a size, lipstick doesn't have a size, and I can't believe no one in the industry has said that before. I think the beauty industry has a lot of change to make as well. I'm hoping in a few years we don't have to have conversations about curvy girls because it will be the norm. We don't talk about skinny girls like that."

On women who inspire her...
"Body positivity starts at home, and my mum has been such a huge inspiration to me. She never talked badly about herself, and I encourage every mother to do the same."

On career highlights...
"There was a very significant email I got after doing my TED Talk. It was from a young girl in college who suffered from anorexia. She said after watching my talk she didn't want to be that person anymore. I couldn't believe I had helped someone like that."

On plans for the future...
"I've seen a gap in the market for curvy bridalwear. And that's all I'm going to say for now."

 

Press play for a behind-the-scenes look at Huda Kattan's Harper's BAZAAR Arabia cover shoot

 

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Ashley Graham, Body Positivity, Mona KAttan, Model, Health and Wellbeing
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