Curve model Robyn Lawley is bae—not only has she covered Marie Claire, French Vogue, Cosmopolitan and been in Maxim, Elle, Sport’s Illustrated and GQ Australia (to name a few), but she’s also frequently in H&M and Ralph Lauren clothing campaigns.
Her most recent venture is the face of Pantene’s new range of conditioners that come out May 15th. This is major for many reasons, the obvious one being that becoming the face of an international beauty brand as a curvy woman is major. The lack of beauty brands that think curvy women have desirable features, pretty much falls on the lower side. Usually, the general feeling is that only a few and by a few we mean 6 women are welcome on the high-fashion runways. Beauty brands take chances every now and then and mass market retailers are the ones left that continuously embrace women of all sizes.
In an interview with Huffington Post Australia she said, “For starters it is such a huge honor to be able to model for Pantene. Stuff like this is never really done with plus models. There’s this weird paradox that plus models don’t even get to go to castings for that kind of stuff. My agents have had to think of ways to accidentally get me into castings for hair and beauty things in America.”
And while that’s a crazy revelation that tells you how bad the industry’s biases towards curvy women are, it’s not really surprising. To this day we’ve only had a few moment sof curvy women in beauty, most notably Sophie Dahl in Saint Laurent, but for the most part makeup companies aren’t jumping to give audiences faces of women with different sizes.
If high-end designers don’t think curvy women can sell clothing, it’s an even further step for them to think that curvy women’s features are aspirational enough for beauty campaigns. What they don’t realize is beauty is more secular than size and so much more universal—everyone has hair and eyelashes and cheekbones and nails, and it truly is for everyone.
Lawley went on to say, “I’ve had big, big makeup companies email my agent and say ‘never send us a plus girl again’, and out of all the people to send that to my agent, I was really surprised that it was the bigger makeup companies. They’re makeup! It’s for the face, it has nothing to do with size or body! I don’t even get it.”