The ‘body positive’ movement is almost exclusively centred on — and championed by — women.
The likes of Tess Holliday, Lena Dunham and Robyn Lawley are doing a great job of encouraging women to appreciate their bodies, and spreading the message that your clothing size shouldn’t dictate the way you feel about yourself (despite what the fashion industry and society in general would have you believe).
Men, on the other hand, haven’t really had a particularly vocal or visible proponent of body diversity or self-love.
Yes, this is probably because women tend to bear the brunt of society’s strict, often unrealistic standards of beauty. Yet men are faced with pressure to look a certain way, too — and “plus size” model Zach Miko is determined to call it out.
Miko is the first model to be signed to IMG Models’ new ‘brawn’ division, which represents ‘big and tall’ men. Previously, he was the only model for Target’s “plus-size” clothing.
He seems pretty damn chuffed about his latest achievement, and the role he’s playing in the body positive movement.
“Being a man of size, I never imagined for a minute that this would be a possible career,” Miko — who’s also a bartender and freelance carpenter — told Buzzfeed.
“Women of all shapes and sizes are beautiful and confident and sexy. The conversation has changed from ‘This is what beautiful is’ to ‘What is beautiful?’ I am humbled to be able to raise that question for the men’s industry.”
Watch: Meghan Ramsay explores the effect of low self-esteem. (Post continues after video.)
Although he’s just been given a great platform to start the conversation, Miko has been spreading the self-love message on Instagram for a while now.