7 gorgeous plus-size models of color you should know about

Plus-size model, body activist and total babe Ashely Graham continues to break barriers.

Graham, who was the first plus-size model to grace the covers of Vogue and Sports Illustrated’s swimsuit edition, recently added a New York Magazine cover to her already impressive resume.

But aside from absolutely slaying her 1940s-style shoot, Graham also openly discussed how white privilege has played a roll in her success as a plus-size model.

“I know I’m on this pedestal because of white privilege,” said Graham in the feature. “To not see black or Latina women as famous in my industry is crazy! I have to talk about it. I want to give those women kudos because they are the ones who paved the way for me.”

While we love Graham and her messages of body positivity and female empowerment, we’d also love to see more curvy women in the spotlight. So we’ve rounded up seven plus-size models of color that we think more people should know about.

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Philomena Kwao

Known for her signature cropped hair, this English model has repped brands such as Nordstrom, Lane Bryant, and Torrid. (Photo: Instagram/philomenakwao)

Denise Bidot

Bidot is a Miami native with Puerto Rican and Kuwaiti heritage — and a killer, smouldering look. She recently starred alongside Philomela Kwao in a Lane Bryant ad, and is the founder of the No Wrong Way Movement, a group that encourages everyone to embrace their most authentic self. (Photo: Instagram/denisebidot)

Naomi Watanabe

In a country where anyone who wears larger than a U.S. size 6 is considered fat, Watanabe definitely stands out in the crowd. The plus-size instagram star is hugely popular in Japan (with more than 7 million followers) and she has an equally big personality. She’s both a personality and an actor, and she has even performed for Beyoncé. (Photo: Instagram/watanabenaomi703)

Jezra M.

Jezra M. is a plus-size model and blogger whose goal is to help women “gain self-love, self-awareness and self-confidence.” She’s modeled for brands that include Forever 21 and Curve Culture. (Photo: Instagram/jezra_m)

Marquita Pring

BFFs with Ashley Graham, Pring has graced the cover of Vogue Italia and appeared in campaigns for Levi’s, Lane Bryant, and Bloomingdales. (Photo: Instagram/marquitapring)

Bishamber Das

Das made headlines as the first South Asian plus-size model in Britain after winning the international Miss India Europe competition in 2014. (Photo: Instagram/bishamberdas)

Naomi Shimada

Naomi Shimada is a body positivity activist who’s been profiled by several media outlets, including Vogue, Refinery 29, and the BBC. She has appeared on the cover of The Observer magazine, and is now working on a documentary video series. (Photo: Instagram/naomishimada)

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