These Unretouched Photos Of Diverse Women Help Empower Girls And Women Everywhere

"It’s our body, our brains and we’re going to change the world with it!"

On Tuesday, the All Woman Project, founded by models Clementine Desseaux and Charli Howard, launched its second campaign featuring unretouched photographs and videos of women encouraging girls and women worldwide to feel empowered, and to show that a woman's size, age, or color does not have to stop them from reaching their full potential.

This latest campaign features models Clementine Desseaux, Charli Howard, Khoudia Diop, Iskra Lawrence, Mari Agory, and Paloma Esser, surfer Quincy Davis, fitness expert Holly Rilinger, and style blogger and university professor Lyn Slater. Additionally, the project partnered with Aerie, the intimates and apparel brand that has made a splash in the industry with its #AerieReal campaign featuring body-positive models like Lawrence and Barbie Ferreira.



To learn more about the All Women Project and its campaign with Aerie, we caught up with Desseaux.

What inspired you to launch the All Woman Project and its latest campaign? 

The All Woman Project was inspired by the need to express our true selves in an industry and a society that wants us to sometimes apologize for just being women. We were both [Desseaux and Howard] tired of being put in boxes and wanted to be our own role models by creating the images we would never get to see! Then, we went to work. For this second installment, we were inspired by the feedback that we got after the first [campaign], and followed the advice from all those women that wrote to us telling what they wanted to see, and here we are, with nine badass women ready to rock and roll! 

Photo by Heather Hazzan
Photo by Heather Hazzan

What was the motivation behind teaming up with Aerie for the second editorial campaign?

When looking for a partner, Aerie was our first pick since they are the leader in terms of body diversity and positive messages within the fashion industry. They are also adepts of non-retouched imagery, which is something we're proud of, too! It was the most organic choice and it was so easy to work with them. They gave us total freedom at all levels and are super supportive. 

"It’s our body, our brains and we’re going to change the world with it!"

Photo by Heather Hazzan
Photo by Heather Hazzan

On the project's website, it says, "Some [women] are deemed the 'real' women of the industry, whereas others are deemed 'high-fashion' and 'editorial.' For some, labels like 'plus-size' create an inclusive space celebrating curvy women, but others see no reason to make the separation. What are your opinions on such labels and others that have developed within the fashion industry?

I have been asked this question about the label "plus-size" since I first moved to the U.S., almost six years ago. For some reason, it's still an issue for some that we do not share the same opinion on the label. Some love it, some hate it, there's no right or wrong, it's a personal preference. For me, I dislike all kinds of boxes and would rather be a free agent. Some of my friends think differently and that's OK, too! 

Why is it so important for the fashion industry in particular to promote body positivity and inclusion, and where do you think the industry stands today?

It's major for this industry to start promoting self-love and self-care to women. After years of promoting self-destruction, sickness, extremes and unattainable ideals, fashion needs to set the record straight and start showing women that they actually do care. A happy, empowered woman will show you love by shopping even more — ask Aerie! Fashion is slowly getting it! It's about time! 

Photo by Heather Hazzan
Photo by Heather Hazzan

How did you cast for the campaign?

Half of the girls we knew from before and were eyeing them for a little while, waiting to book them. [For] the other half, we researched a lot and found the best fit for our project. We like the girls to be inspiring, naturally beautiful, inside and out, and have a voice that they use to promote a diverse, positive message. I think they are all so perfect and inspiring in their own different way! 

As models, what challenges have you faced in the industry and how have you overcome them? 

As a model, you're always tested. You have to grow thick skin and believe me, it's hard to convince yourself that you are enough, that you are worth it, that you are more than what you look like, when everyone only judges you on your body and how perfect/imperfect it is. Not many women can handle that much pressure on a daily basis. For that, models are some of the strongest women I know.

Photo by Heather Hazzan
Photo by Heather Hazzan


Did having to overcome these challenges serve as inspiration for creating the All Woman Campaign?

Our main inspiration to create the All Woman Project was the lack of role models and inspiration Charli and I had growing up. We both lacked confidence and thought we weren't enough — skinny enough, pretty enough, tan enough, White enough. 

"We wanted to give young women and girls something to look up to that’s not perfect, that’s not polished or overly sexualized. We wanted to give them real awesomeness from real women, flaws and all! We want them to look at our girl gang and say 'I can [sit] with them!' "

Photo by Heather Hazzan
Photo by Heather Hazzan

Why do you think it is so important for women to encourage themselves (and others) to find self-confidence? 

Women are often taken down by men, society, other women. It's major for our well-being and self-esteem that we find love and comfort in something positive. Especially now, with our unfortunate political situation, All Woman Project and all women empowerment organizations are much, much needed!

Photo by Heather Hazzan
Photo by Heather Hazzan

You can find more images from the campaign — styled by Calvy Click, produced by Les Mijotés, and with makeup by Alyssa Lorranie — below.

Photo by Heather Hazzan
Photo by Heather Hazzan
Photo by Heather Hazzan
Photo by Heather Hazzan


Photo by Heather Hazzan
Photo by Heather Hazzan
Photo by Heather Hazzan
Photo by Heather Hazzan
Photo by Heather Hazzan
Photo by Heather Hazzan
Photo by Heather Hazzan
Photo by Heather Hazzan

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