Just because plus-size models are plus-size, doesn't mean that they don't get plastic surgery or other cosmetic procedures.
Models, even plus-size ones, still feel pressure to look a certain way to maintain their images in a competitive and cut-throat industry.
But there is one procedure in particular that may be more common among plus-size women than others: the removal of the "double chin."
"Classical beauty is, in part, characterized by a delicate jawline, slight heart shape to the face, and a petite chin," plastic surgeon Dr. Joshua Zuckerman told Revelist. "It's true that many women, 'plus-size' models and otherwise, currently want to maintain a bit of a fuller figure — while at the same retaining a face that is classically beautiful."
There are a couple of ways to achieve this effect, he explained: One is liposuction under the chin, and the other is Kybella, a series of non-surgical injections that "melts" the fat away.
"The use of Kybella or liposuction under the chin makes [these results] eminently possible, with little to no downtime and with lasting results," Dr. Zuckerman added. "We have definitely seen an uptick in these procedures to this end."
Most successful plus-size models, no matter where else on their bodies they may have fat, often noticeably lack it in one place: the chin.
Last August Tess Holliday posted a photo to Instagram of herself with Dr. Ashkan Ghavami, and was not shy about revealing that she was considering getting work done by the Beverly Hills plastic surgeon (though she did not mention what kind of work).
"Part of what I aim to do with #EffYourBeautyStandards is to let people feel like they are allowed to make choices for their own body," she wrote. "Whether that is shaving or not, getting tattooed or pierced, working out to change your body, or choosing to undergo plastic surgery — you are allowed to love your body and still want to change things about yourself."
When it comes to double-chin elimination, plastic surgeon Dr. David Shafer told Revelist that "I have found it really depends on what the patient is looking to achieve and their timeline. Liposuction will have swelling and possible bruising for several days. Kybella always has swelling after the treatments," but noted that in particular, "Kybella is a popular treatment for people to 'melt' the fat under their chin."
"Most people are willing to put up with a little swelling and possible bruising if it means they will have an improved chin/neck contour."
Body positivity means loving your body, whether that's by leaving it exactly the way it is or by making changes to it through surgery, injections, tattoos, hair color, or whatever the case may be. And we're getting luckier in seeing more and more diverse bodies represented in media. But we've still got a way to go before the plus-size bodies in media better represent the plus-size bodies outside of media — double-chins and all.