2012: A Year of Kate Upton Proving Sophia Neophitou Dead Wrong

Kate Upton | Guy Aroch | GQ Italia August 2012

(By our new writer Tiara Williams)

The saying any press is good press sure represents Kate Upton’s career in the last year. Upton started out being snubbed by Victoria’s Secrets Sophia Neophitou who famously said:

She’s like a footballer’s wife, with too-blond hair and that kind of face that anyone with enough money can buy

Kate Upton Inspires Us With Her Self Confidence

Sheesh! Statements like that would send must people crawling away with self-doubt. Neophitou proclaimed that Upton would never be able to grace the Victoria Secret runway, even though Upton had modeled in the Victoria Secrets catalogue a few times prior to that statement.

Upton’s having a fuller figure seemed for some a no-win for a modeling career, especially after Neophitou proclaimed her not fit for public consumption, Victoria’s Secret style.

Three cheers for Kate Upton, who heads the Models.com 2012 Breathrough Models list.

Kate Upton | Steven Meisel | Vogue Italia November 2012 | Miss Kate Upton

Kate Upton had a major male following after a YouTube video of her doing a famous dance called the “Dougie.” She showed everyone that in fact she wasn’t just a pretty face but a woman with personality, charisma and undaunting drive.

Like her or not, Kate Upton was determined to manage her own career.

If there wasn’t room in Neophitou’s fashion world for Kate Upton, she would make the room for herself. Upton was noticeably witty after the Victoria’s Secret fashion princess proclaimed her verdict, first reminding everyone that Gisele is a football wife and also the highest paid model in the world.

So what exactly is so bad about being a football wife? More importantly why was that okay for someone like Neophitou to say in a public forum called the New York Times? Who IS this chic anyway? Forgive me for not knowing.

For a Victoria’s Secret brand that focuses so much on sexuality, why wouldn’t a woman as beautiful and confident in her sexuality as Kate Upton not be considered the right fit?

REAL Supermodels To the Rescue

Upton has said that she would be the one to bring supermodels back and realizes that — despite these haters — she is relatable to the vast majority of women. Upton won over her female fan base when she spoke about not being able to fit into the sample sizes. What the heck. Neither could Marilyn Monroe!

Upton had heard it time and time again. “People told me I couldn’t be fashion, that I’m an old-fashioned body girl, only good for swimwear.”

This thought process also reminds us that it is okay to showcase your body in a bathing suit for men to look at as an object and nothing more.  Beliefs like that are quite insulting imho.

It’s known that today’s high-fashion industry seems to only have one body type for both men and women. The body type seems to be what is deemed as unisex.

Rad Hourani’s Unisex Anatomy for Exit Magazine shows symmetrical shots of naked women and men in black and white print. While viewing the photos unisex you realize how epicene the fashion industry has become in its vision of the human body.

In the 20th Century films dictated the codes of the quintessential body. In the 21st Century, it is Fashion who gives the codes of the Contemporary ideal of anatomy. The elongated bodies that appear on runway shows and on editorials have trickled down to celebrity and film culture to become seamless. Rad Hourani’s photographic and digital dissection of human anatomy juxtaposes genders to questions the separation and the illusion of social constructs that divide gender and race. He uses flawless filiform and athletic bodies for their evanescent qualities. For Rad Hourani their anatomical resemblance and majestic attributes allow us to see the divisions of gender and race as a mere illusion

This edict is a travesty for the vast majority of women, for whom fashion has a major hold on slef-image. After reading those ideas I asked myself if fashion is now a science project?

Why would you want to see gender as a mere illusion — or am I stuck in some anti-feminist mindset? 

Acknowledging that humanity comes in countless body types, there are certain fundamental differences that apply to the majority of female and male bodies.  A woman’s body should show femininity in the form of curves, breasts and hips.

Creating unisex images that strip away women’s curves send messages about identity are essentially making the male body the gold standard. These images confuse a teenage girl into thinking her developing body is abnormal.

This major push to create a non-genderless physical prototype is another way to corrupt ones’ mind into to thinking there is something unhealthy about having a womanly physique.


Carine Roitfeld Taps Kate Upton for Rebirth Editorial in CR, Roitfeld’s New Magazine

Models of the 90’s like Cindy Crawford, Tyra Banks, and Linda Evangelista appeared as more mainstream body types.  You didn’t have to take a double take to know if you were looking at a female or male body in those trousers.

The 90s supermodels had curves, beautiful recognizable faces and became household names.

Could someone tell me what’s so immoral with that? Were the supermodels becoming too big for a male-dominated fashion industry to handle. Were they too sexual, strong and beautiful?

Accomplished, sexy women tend to scare the world, and not just in fashion. When we assert ourselves, we become for than just objects.

Knowing that Upton was told she had an “old-fashioned body” type is very displeasing to me. Why must one body type be eradicated from the fashion industry and replaced with another one? What’s wrong with a fusion of different body types? At the risk of Anne receiving complaints about her new writer, let me add — especially a womanly figure like Kate Upton’s shows off everything that’s authentic about being a woman.

Yes, I said “authentic”.

Kate Upton Plays Noble Origins Tigress Lensed by Bruce Weber for Vogue Germany January 2012

Movers and Shakers Side With Upton

I’m sure that Neophitou and anyone else in the fashion industry who doubted Upton’s capacity to move her career forward is eating there words right now. Kate Upton is a force to be reckoned with in this last year.

Anna Wintour gave Upton her seal of approval by giving her an American Vogue profile , an acknowledgement that means everything in the fashion world. Upton has moved from Sports Illustrated Cover girl in February 2012. She also was the cover model for March 2012 US Esquire Magazine and Esquire Czech Republic April 2012 edition lensed by Yu Tsi.

Upton made it to the Vogue Italia cover for their November issue, showing a different, glamorous side of the model captured by Steven Meisel. Kate has even made it to the cover of British Vogue January 2013….not bad for curvy model? None other than Carine Roitfeld and Bruce Weber are also Kate Upton fans, with Roitfeld putting Kate on the cover of her new CR Fashion Book. 

Her success shows that she can very well wear swimwear and then grace the cover of a high fashion magazine as the great supermodels did. I’m sure Upton will have an immense year in 2013 and perhaps assist in the change that the fashion world needs to see a healthy, toned, real woman’s body.

Curves on Women Are Healthy

Perhaps the fashion industry needs to study evolutionary biology, based on a new report on BMI and mortality rates, the largest study ever conducted on BMI and mortality. The fashion industry’s preference for 16-18 BMI’s puts women at risk.  Writes the New York Times January 1, 2013:

The report on nearly three million people found that those whose B.M.I. ranked them as overweight had less risk of dying than people of normal weight. And while obese people had a greater mortality risk over all, those at the lowest obesity level (B.M.I. of 30 to 34.9) were not more likely to die than normal-weight people.

Upton is like a goddess of modern times showing us that being comfortable in your own skin, having curves and an obvious sexuality doesn’t make one a slut and doesn’t close the door to advancement in the fashion industry. And those curves may actually help you live longer. 

I personally can’t wait to see what else Kate Upton accomplishes in a career waiting to sky rocket into high gear. Fashionista bets she will cover Anna Wintour’s American Vogue.

Something tells me that one day Kate Upton fans and fashionable women worldwide will be saying “Sophia Who?”~Tiara