If you’re thinking Sheridan Seekamp‘s face looks familiar, it’s either because she was a contestant alongside Shanina Shaik on reality show Make Me a Supermodel, or because you’ve spied her over the last seven years working for brands like Vintage Marketplace and Wheels & Dollbaby. With cheekbones like hers, this face is one you just don’t forget.
Unfortunately it wasn’t her face that got everyone talking when she was just a 19-year-old and competing for the Make Me a Supermodel title back in 2008. Sheridan’s weight was the centre of attention during the show, and was criticised by the judges, including Jennifer Hawkins, Jackie Frank, Tyson Beckford and Martin Walsh.
“I put on weight while on the show and was the biggest I have ever been, and that is the truth,” she tells theFashionSpot. “At the end of the day, these reality shows need controversy for ratings and my weight just so happened to stir up opinions,” she continued. “Luckily I have a thick skin.”
If anything, the comments only gave her more drive to pursue modelling, a steady career which she has enjoyed with Giant Management since she left the show. She completely loves it now, suggesting that people in the modelling world really need to “appreciate the fact they can be a model in the first place, because not everyone can do it”. She explains, “If you can do that and have good management, along with looking after yourself, you can enjoy a really long career in an industry that is very rewarding, both personally and financially.”
Unlike many others who use reality TV as a springboard for their career, Sheridan doesn’t think the show really played a part in where she is today. “The show had neither a positive or negative impact on my career,” she explains. “I have been most successful in the last few years, and moving to Melbourne and building up a client base really helped.”
She’s also learned to love her body since the show, although she admits the attention surrounding her weight on Make Me A Supermodel unsurprisingly “upset” her. “Over the years I have absolutely began to love myself from within,” she reveals. “I am appreciating how important it is to look after myself from a health aspect,” she continues, noting that she doesn’t smoke and hardly drinks alcohol. “Dress sizes and weighing myself, haven’t done that in years, are the least of my worries.”
Although obviously healthy and at a smaller size than she was on Make Me a Supermodel all those years ago, at size 10 Sheridan is still considered “plus-size” by the some of the industry but doesn’t see a problem with the term. “Designers will always use models that fit their sample size and there is nothing wrong with that,” she says. “We just need to educate the public that plus-size is not a bad thing, it is simple a term used in the industry to differentiate between model types.”
Having had a close eye on the modelling world for the better half of a decade, Sheridan thinks “the industry has progressed” since the show because “plus-size modelling has become so popular”. For her, the problem isn’t with the term “plus-size” or even the reaction to curvy women in magazine spreads and on runways. It’s the general public. “People need to learn not to compare themselves to models, I think that is the only issue.”
Well, when you put it that way…