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Robyn Lawley Makes History as First ‘Plus-Sized’ Model Featured in Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue

Sports Illustrated‘s swimsuit issue is usually a display of ultra-thin women in bikinis. But all that’s about to change, and we couldn’t be happier. Swimsuitsforall has taken out an ad in the publication starring Ashley Graham, plus-sized model and outspoken champion for body diversity. But she won’t be the only plus girl appearing in the annual issue.


Image: Sports Illustrated

Australian model Robyn Lawley has been tapped for the issue, making her the first plus-sized model (she’s a size 10) to grace its pages — in a bikini from her own line, no less. Robyn has been very outspoken in the past about how she’s not actually plus-sized. As she told Clique magazine, “You know, in the beginning I didn’t mind getting called it, I was like, ‘Yay! It’s fine!’ And it’s been a community that’s really represented me well and loved me and really helped me. But I’m not a plus-size person, and I’m a model. I don’t think I need that ‘plus-size’ in front of it.” Still, in the modeling world, she’s bigger than a “straight size” model, which in this topsy-turvy universe makes her plus-sized.

We seem to be in the middle of a plus revolution as more retailers expand stylish size options for larger women. Target just announced the launch of a new plus collection, so it is quite heartening to see Sports Illustrated attempt to throw some support behind the cause. While the move is revolutionary, we can’t help but wonder what would happen if the magazine featured an actual plus-sized woman in a bikini. But, baby steps — and if this is what baby steps look like, we can’t wait for SI to take a few more.

[via E!]