That’s right: from now on (as a result of many requests over the years), Skinny VS Curvy will feature, besides women and their wide range of body shapes and body image issues, MEN!
And here we are, launching our new category with the first plus-size male model – Zach Miko, who was signed a few months back with ING Models, modeled for Target and became the image of a ‘brawn’ model or the equivalent of ‘curve’ for women. Zach’s stats:
Height: 6ft 6in / 198cm
Waist: 40in / 102cm
On how society views men who have body image issues as un-masculine:
I always had my own body-image struggle. With men, there is still a lot of bravado and false masculinity to get through. You’re not supposed to care about how you look. If you have issues, you aren’t supposed to talk about it. It’s considered weak or un-masculine. Which is stupid. It’s about having feelings that make you human. I think, even now with the progression, you still have that 1950s male mentality of men being strong and emotionless. If it makes men realise that it’s OK to care about how you look, or even feel bad about it and want to change … I have had [body] issues all my life and that can make you insecure. You project those feelings on to others and that can damage relationships. It creates this vicious cycle. It could all be avoided if you opened up and said I do or don’t feel good about myself.
On the cause of his insecurities and trying to make people feel good about themselves:
I was between diets and trying to change the way I look for so long. As an actor, I was told by every casting director that I was too big. But I think I was trying to make other people more comfortable. I have always been a big guy, I was picked on as a kid, and that’s where it came from. We live in a society where “big” and “fat” have become insults, and “skinny”, “little” and “petite” have become compliments. We have come to correlate a negative meaning with “big” and “fat”.
On the fact that plus0sized people can be healthy:
I am a big advocate of health. I just don’t think you have to be a twig to [be healthy]. Other people don’t have a right to project an idea of unhealthy on to you if you have this extra weight. I think labeling people as unhealthy is unfair. You don’t know what their health is. People think I’m a slob and that I don’t take care of myself. But I do. For starters, I cycle every day. But you do start to internalize that [feeling].
… says Zach.
More pictures of the first plus-size male model next!