We had the good fortune of connecting with Hayley Herms and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Hayley, have you ever found yourself in a spot where you had to decide whether to give up or keep going? How did you make the choice?
Overtime I have learned, if you have to keep forcing something or someone then it’s most likely not meant to be. Something that is meant for you, yes, may have challenges or be difficult to a degree, but it won’t feel completely forced.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I’m mostly known for plus size modeling so what I think sets me apart from other typical plus size models is that often times – brands depict plus size women as “curves in the right places”, no cellulite, no lose skin, no rolls, always tall, no tattoos or visible marks, etc etc. I am proud to say that I am a short, tattoo’d with visible lose skin and cellulite and I have walked NYFW, been in Vogue, and hired by some of the biggest companies in the industry! I am happy I can help break barriers even within my own industry that’s already shattering typical norms. I started modeling in the 7th grade. I grew up singing & child acting lead me naturally into modeling. I had posted some of my acting shots on Myspace when I was 12 (I had always looked older), and photographer hit me on Myspace and asked me if I would shoot for Ed Hardys plus size line at the time. I asked my mom, and she said yes, and I went on set the next week and felt like a chameleon – I LOVED it! By high school, I started taking modeling more and more seriously, and by junior year I dropped out, enrolled in a program to get a diploma and graduated high school a year early to pursue modeling and being an entertainer full time! The road has not been smooth, life was not easy growing up. I was struggling and hiding the fact that I was going through child abuse every day in my house. Modeling and music were the only things that gave me hope, but with constant bruises, no way to drive or leave, and emotional struggles, it was hard. I had to fight for myself and my dream every.single.day. While facing my own personal struggles at home, the industry almost had no work for plus size models unless it was with a small independent brand or company and you were under a size 12/14 with no stomach, no arm fat, no nothing – everywhere felt like a huge NO. I still loved working with small brands to gain the experience, but it almost NEVER paid and the drive was usually 2-3 hours one way. At some points, I felt like there was no hope for the industry or for me to be able to live full time as a model and pursue my dreams. Slowly, but surely I never gave up and kept going, and now the industry has made huge strides since then in the past five years due largely to the internet and social media, but the PS industry still has sooo much further to go. As corny as it sounds, I overcame my challenges and still do to this day by never giving up. If I have an intuition or passion about something, I just go for it because life is too short to sit around and watch it pass you by or have regrets in the long run. If you don’t believe in yourself, no one else will and in this industry you need to be very self motivated. My brand is all about self love no matter how I express it – my art, my modeling, my music. So what I want to show the world and want the world to know is that you can change the world, even if you’re just one person but first you have to be that change and embody that change. If you have faith and dedication in yourself, you’re one step closer. Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither are humans. There will be ups and downs, but keep having faith and looking for the good in the world is important; you’d be surprised how many people actually want to see you succeed in the world and are rooting for you!
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Because we are still in a Pandemic and we do not know when it’s going to end – my friends and I love to spend time together outdoors. Some exciting places to go or hang out could be: hiking Runyon or Fryman Canyon, spending time at the Malibu beaches, the flower market in DTLA or movies in the Hollywood Forever Cemetery or the trading post on Melrose on Sundays after bottomless mimosas on Ventura in Studio City (so many good brunch spots on Ventura). Right now with so many small business going under, my friends and I also like to support local small businesses by finding them on Tik Tok!! So far some of our favorites to order from have been, Little O’s Bakery, Millet Crepe, Jon & Vinnys, Bludso’s, and more!
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
As 2021 is just beginning, reflecting back on 2020 the person who probably played the biggest life changing role in my life was/is Alexandra-Jo @sheisyourmedicine. Alex is one of my spiritual teachers and mentors based in Costa Rica. She has really helped me find and grow myself. Because of her, I feel like I am a better person and because I am a better person to myself, I can be a better person to others which is one of my missions in life; keep spreading true, genuine love to everyone you meet, but most importantly, spreading it to yourself as well.
Other: Tik Tok: @hayleyhermsofficial
Modeling Course: https://hayleyhermsofficial.medium.com/how-to-become-a-plus-size-model-a-course-for-the-aspiring-plus-size-model-march-21-class-570d4537afd1?source=messageShare-bf89e9c5ee5f-1612047034
‘How To Become A Plus Size Model’ Online Course: https://
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