Swimsuit model Ashley Graham has become the first plus size model to ever feature in an issue of Sports Illustrated magazine. The 26-year-old model features in a beautiful new campaign for swimwear brand swimsuitsforall, which was today unveiled as the first ever plus size ad to have been selected to grace the pages of the publication's iconic Swimsuit Issue.
The stunning campaign marks an important milestone for both Sports Illustrated and the wider fashion industry, which has come under heavy fire from critics in recent months for its alleged discrimination of plus size women.
Ashley Graham, a size 16 fashion star raised in Nebraska, said of her ground-breaking campaign.
'I know my curves are sexy and I want everyone else to know that theirs are too. There is no reason to hide and every reason to flaunt. The world is ready for more curves in bikinis.
'swimsuitsforall helps women feel confident and sexy in swimsuits and I am so thrilled to be a part of the Curves in Bikinis campaign!'
Fashion expert and TV presenter Louise Roe told DailyMail.com that she was 'thrilled' to see Sports Illustrated taking a stand in support of the plus size industry, adding that the magazine was helping to set a positive example for other fashion publications around the world.
'Honestly, i'm thrilled to see this. Over the last couple of years, the fashion industry has changed so much and opened up to new ways of doing things - from transgender models on the runway to the rise of power-bloggers on the front row - it's enlightening to see old 'rules' being broken down.
'And such an infamous magazine embracing curves is a big deal. Representing all body types sets a positive example, not to mention a super sexy one.'
Moshe Laniado, CEO and President of swimsuitsforall said;
“Tastes and body types change over time and curves have never been more "in". There is no better way to celebrate and show off than by donning a bikini.
'When the Curves in Bikinis ad in Sports Illustrated is released, the world will be watching and they’ll like what they see.'
Alongside the print campaign, the brand have also launched a risque video ad, which sees a bikini-clad Ashley strolling along the beach, capturing the attention of some overwhelmed male admirers in the process. The saucy ad ends with the brunette model flinging her bikini top into a nearby swimming pool, while flashing a cheeky smile at the camera.