Plus size model Tess Holliday is more than OK in her own skin.
The glamorous 29-year-old -- often billed as "the first size 22 model"
-- gets candid in a new interview with The Guardian
about not letting what most people see as hurtful words get her down. In fact, she says she's fine with being called plain "fat."
"To me it's just a word, but it wasn't until I discovered the body positive community that I became OK with it," Tess says. "I've been called fat my whole life. I am fat, so it's kind of silly to get mad about it."
She makes no apologies about her size.
"Everyone has their vices, but mine are visible," she says about comfort-eating. "If I shot all day and I want a f**king hot chocolate and a chocolate croissant, I'm going to eat it. Am I going to eat it for breakfast, lunch and dinner? No. Is it OK to do it? If you want. But, you know, no one is coming at celebrities for smoking two packs of cigarettes. Or people who post a photo with their drink at the end of the day. So why is it OK to do that to me? Life is sh**ty, so why would you judge somebody for dealing with it in the best way they can?"
Tess, who appears in a black corset and matching black undies for The Guardian's photoshoot, obviously has no problem speaking her mind. When the British newspaper notes that people are gawking at her during the sexy shoot in Red Hook, Brooklyn, she yells, "Keep driving, a**holes. Never seen a fat girl in her underwear before?"
The stares are, of course, not all bad. Tess says she's a hit particularly with African-American men.
"I do admit that black men love me," she says. "I always forget that, and then I come to a black neighborhood and I remember."
Tess, however, is happily engaged to her fiance Nick, who she met when he left her a message on Tumblr telling her that he loved how she inspired other women.
"I was like, this guy's never going to give me a chance in hell because he's so hot," she recalls. "Because I've never really had good-looking boyfriends before. My friends would always tell me, 'There's no way you’re going to get a nice guy and a hot guy -- you're fat, you need to settle for one or the other.' I told them, 'I deserve both.'"