Fitness influencer Steph Claire Smith has revealed the horrifying words said to her when she was modelling in the United States.
Steph began modelling at 18, and got consistent work in Australia before trying to make a name for herself in Los Angeles and New York.
On Grace Beverly’s Working Hard podcast the host said there was a perception that the American modelling scene was a lot more fast paced and glamorous environment.
“I totally forgot it meant that I was starting from scratch again,” Steph said on the podcast.
“Not only did no one know who I was but it was a different market so my size was suddenly a really big issue.”
She said her New York agency took her name off of the books until she was “worthy” to be sent to castings with the agency’s name attached to hers.
“I was going in for measurements every Monday and Friday, and they were telling me things like stop squatting, take hot yoga,” she said.
“[They said] if I got hungry or have a Diet Coke. It was ridiculous, the messaging.”
She said looking back, she couldn’t believe some of those things were said.
“At one point they said some of the girls take up smoking to suppress hunger,” she said.
It wasn’t long before Steph decided that the American modelling scene wasn’t for her and she returned to Australia.
Steph has been open about her experience in the US, and how it helped her create Keep it Cleaner with Laura Henshaw.
Last year, she told Marie Claire: “I was thriving here in Aussie and decided to make the move to New York, and it was here that I was exposed to the extremely toxic side of the industry, which led to disordered eating, negative body image and an unhealthy relationship with exercise.
“My now business partner and best friend Laura went through a similar experience, and we shared a passion to help other women get through, or completely avoid falling into the same trap we once had.
“We drew from our personal experiences to shape our inclusive and supportive KIC program, with the core message that it’s not about how you look, it’s about how you feel!”