When Tess Holliday has things to say, she says them clearly. The Mississippi-born model has made headlines for frequently speaking out on body acceptance, feminism, and motherhood issues. Though there was an increase in the popularity of models larger than the sample size in recent years, few jobs exist for individuals who fit into a specific mold—even in categories where size shouldn’t even be a factor.
Holliday became one of modeling’s most vocal women by speaking out. If you’re unfamiliar with the modeling sensation, read more about this glamorous plus-size icon in this article.
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Tess Holliday: Who Is She?
Tess Holiday, also known as Tess Typhoon and Tess Munster, was born Ryann Hoven. Since January 2016, the mother of Rylee has used her fiancé (now ex-husband) Nick Holliday’s surname professionally.
Holliday’s big break arrived from an unlikely source: she was the face of the A&E TV show “Heavy” despite not being a cast member. She modeled for Jessica Louise Clothing and Domino Dollhouse after appearing in national print and billboard advertisements for the show. She has also appeared in Vogue Italia.
After being turned down for an audition in Atlanta at the age of 15 because she was “too big and too short,” Holliday shared pics of herself on Model Mayhem. It wasn’t until then that her career took off.
Holliday created the viral body-positive moment called “Eff Your Beauty Standards.” She initiated it on Instagram as a metaphorical middle finger to society regarding what plus-sized people can and can’t wear and how they should look. The account has over 400,000 followers, and the hashtag has been used more than 5,000,000 times.
The model was born and raised in the Mississippi town of Laurel. Her mother abandoned her father when Holliday was a child, and she claims her family relocated 40 times before she turned ten.
Her mother was paralyzed and disabled in June 1995 after being shot in the head twice by her fiancé, who’d been charged with attempted murder. Holliday and her brother were ten years old when they returned to their grandparents’ home in Mississippi to help their mother recover.
Holliday was bullied since fifth grade for her weight and pale skin, having a disabled mother, and living in a trailer behind her grandparents’ house. She dropped out of school at 17 and obtained her GED.
Holliday has also alleged that her father verbally abused her about her size, but she has stated that her mother supported and encouraged her to become a model. Holliday has cut ties with her father.
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Holliday gave birth to Rylee when she was 20. In June 2015, she had lost contact with Rilee’s father. Nick Holliday and Tess got engaged on July 5, 2014. Nick is a photographer, businessman, and artist from Australia, and he first met Tess on Tumblr in 2012.
Tess and Nick secretly married on July 5, 2014. She became pregnant in 2016., and they welcomed Bowie Juniper Holliday, their son, in June 2016.
However, they have since divorced. Furthermore, regarding her sexuality, she came out in 2019 as a pansexual. In 2021, she stated she was recovering from anorexia.
Holliday auditioned for a plus model casting call in Atlanta, Georgia, when she was 15. Because she was “too big and short,” she was told she would be fortunate to do print advertisements or catalog work. She later moved to Seattle, where she worked as a make-up artist, hairstylist, head make-up artist, and creative director at runway shows for two years.
She went back to Mississippi when she was 20, gave birth to her son, and moved back to Seattle. In 2010, she relocated to Los Angeles. Meanwhile, she was a receptionist at a dental office in Los Angeles when she decided to be a professional model in 2011. Holliday responded to Torrid’s “House of Dreams Model Search” and got in.
In addition, after being discovered online, A&E chose her to be the face of their documentary tv series “Heavy.” Furthermore, she was named the face of the tv show in June 2011 and was featured in a national advertisement and on billboards nationwide.
She was also tagged on “fatshion” blogs, plus size clothing lines, and models accessories, and was approached to audition for “The Big Girls Club” by Vh1’s. She has also been featured in Nylon magazine and Vogue Italia.
Tess had her first naked photoshoot in 2012. By 2014, a video called ‘#everyBODYisflawless’ was uploaded to Vimeo, featuring Tess, models Nadia Aboulhosn and Gabi Gregg, and other plus-size fashion bloggers; lip-syncing and dancing to Beyoncé’s song “Flawless.”
Holliday has also appeared on television shows such as Entertainment Tonight, Ice and Coco, and many others. Also, Milk Model Management announced in 2015 that Tess Holliday had joined their plus-size segment, Curves. She also had her first agency shoot in May 2015.
Tess was also featured on the cover of “People.” She appeared in the sustainable fashion campaign of H&M in September 2015. Tess also emerged in Addition Elle’s fall 2015 capsule collection campaign. She also stated that she is working on designing her clothing line. In 2015, she participated in a fashion shoot for the December issue of Marie Claire UK in November.
In January 2016, Penningtons, a Canadian plus-size retailer, announced a collaboration with Tess to unveil a capsule collection carrying her name under their mblm label. The model donates the profit she made from selling shirts with the phrase “Eff Your Beauty Standards” to a charity.
Net Worth and Social Media
Holliday is active on various social media platforms. Her Instagram handle, @tessholliday, has over 2.5 million followers, while her Twitter account has more than 90.7K followers. In addition, her official Facebook page has over 2.1 million followers.
This incredible model undoubtedly earns a fortune through her hard work. Her modeling career could become her primary source of income.
Holliday’s net worth as of 2021 is $4 million. She has amassed a good fortune due to her various sources of income, but she prefers to live a simple life.
It’s hard to find plus-sized clothing, but the emergence of models like Tess Holliday makes the search for plus sizes easier.