In the very first meeting with Priscilla Boh, a plus sized model in Singapore, her positivity and drive to initiate new content was welcomed like a refreshing drink in hot summer. After freelance actress Xixi and beauty pageant queen Cate was roped in, the dynamics of ABSgirls (Amazing Big Sized Girls) was easily transformed to that of three best friends with childlike faith.
Despite their busy schedules, the girls were dedicated in making time for Chiobu Collective, brainstorming possible content that could benefit the plus sized community. Each and every interaction opportunity with them were always filled with laughter and positivity. Hence, we sat down and got to know what drove them to always have such a bright outlook on life.
Q: Hi girls! Thank you for taking the time to sit down to have a quick chat with us! While we have already lined up a couple of videos for our viewers, what is the running theme across all of the videos?
A: The content we have will only serve to empower, advocate and inspire other girls. The three of us have always been plus sized, and have dealt with a lot of ups and downs. Through ChiobuTV, we show realistic solutions on how to deal with the stereotypes of being a plus sized girl and to inspire not only the plus sized community, but everyone else to be a better version of themselves.
Q: What makes ABSGirls unique?
A: We don’t think many people have the opportunity to be in a close group where each person is at least a decade old apart. For example, Xixi is in her 20s, Priscilla is in her 30s, and Cate is in her 40s. Having such a sizeable age gap can definitely work into our advantage as we dive into different content and tweaking it to be relevant for each target audience according to their ages. We also come from different industries, and this gives us an opportunity to share different experiences and provide fresh perspectives on different issues that a plus sized woman may face.
Q: How does ChiobuTV come in to give you girls a voice?
A: Through the platform, I feel that others are given the opportunity to better understand what are some of the daily issues faced by plus sized girls while we give tips and solutions to girls who struggle with their body image in our current society. We really hope that people will enjoy our videos regardless if they view it as pure entertainment, or as an opportunity to provide support for a movement that destigmatizes bigger sized girls.
Q: What is the kind of content you look to creating on our platform to redefine what it means to be amazing, pretty or beautiful? What are some of the challenges do you girls expect to face?
A: I think we will definitely create content that targets different festivities like Chinese New Year, Halloween, Christmas etc. Every girl wants to look pretty during the festive season but I believe why plus sized ladies are not enjoying as much as the petite girls is because it is difficult for them to find glamorous, fitting outfits. We want to inspire plus sized women to try on different clothes, wear different makeup during different festivities etc. This is so that others can have a fresh perspective of what it means to be plus sized, and to challenges ourselves to not give into the stereotypic idea that others have of us.
The stereotype that others have of the plus sized community is a challenge in itself. As much as we can go around convincing others that we are beautiful, there will be that one person out there who disagrees because they may think that plus sized girls have health issues. We would not want to convince them otherwise, but we want people to recognize that we are all individually unique.
The three of us in each of our own ways have made a point by achieving milestones that normal people wouldn’t. For example, Xixi is an actress, Cate is a plus sized pageant queen, and I am a plus sized model. We have defied all odds against us and made achievements in our lives. To overcome the challenge, one must first love yourself to make the change. Once you are able to change yourself, then you will be able to eventually change the perception of how others view you.
Recognize and reinforce that fact so that it resonates within you, and do not allow someone else to take your right of self-empowerment away.
Q: What makes you strong when people put you girls down?
A: We have to be constantly aware of our confidence level. Many people do not know are the difficulties that plus sized girls normally face. Positivity is the key to our daily lives. We may be plus sized, but there are many things that we have achieved that maybe as a normal sized being have never got to experience.
The most important thing to understand is that nobody can give you the strength you need except for yourself. When people put us down, we know exactly who and what we want to be. Recognize and reinforce that fact so that it resonates within you, and do not allow someone else to take your right of self-empowerment away.