Skinny Girls Don’t Sell African Fashion – Model
“I got a job as a presenter to anchor one fashion show and a friend to the owner of the show was supposed to handle my makeover and everything, but he was nasty to me.
“He went like 'you are not ready to be a presenter yet, how can you be fat and want to be a presenter?' He told the organizer not to use me as the face of the show.
“This was a job I already got.”
These are words of Jennifer Enujiugha, a Nigerian plus-size model, TV presenter, VJ and choreographer.
For many African men, she represents the real African beauty. Many will give a finger to embrace her curvy body, but in the world of fashion, she faces what can be called discrimination.
In a recent chat with Bounce News in Lagos, she spoke on a range of issues affecting the fashion industry, particularly the refusal to embrace the real beauty of the African woman.
It's widely seen that African women are not skinny. They have enough flesh to hold and give their man some real warmth, but the industry likes the western depiction of ‘skinny as pretty’.
If anyone thought she would be taking these nasty comments with her head down, think again.
“Skinny women do not really sell African fashion,” she said, arguing that many ladies who want to purchase these outfits have features different from the girls they see on the runway.
“Everybody wants to make outfits for skinny ladies but when they decide to make for plus-size, they forget that there are certain things to look out for in plus-size ladies.
“Its not everybody that has a flat tummy like I do, why make an outfit that will protrude their tummy? Why not make outfits to hide that and concentrate on their major features?” she asked.
These errors reflect an industry filled with people who are not willing to face the reality.
She told Bounce News that she has seen her personal story as a reflection of what big-sized women face in the larger society.
If a beautiful woman like her can be such insulted in an industry where she has been a key player, then what would the less glamourous big women be facing?
The Miss Curvy Nigeria top model is starting a web series that will help plus-size women have some confidence in themselves.
With the show tagged '500 Shades of Me' she says the society should not determine how beautiful you see yourself.