'Sports Illustrated Swimsuit' model Natalie Noel is using ‘body normalcy’ to empower others: ‘I want women to feel that they can do it, too’

For model and influencer Natalie Noel, being "normal" is the best way to stand out.

"In the industry, you see models who are very thin or you see plus-size models, but there isn't this genre of modeling that's right in the middle," the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit model told Fox News Digital.

Noel first made waves in the publication in 2021 and was featured again in the 2022 issue, along with Kim Kardashian, Ciara, Maye Musk and Yumi Nu.

But while shooting looks at some of the most beautiful beaches in the world is definitely nice, for Noel, modeling is about more than the glitz and glamor, as she wants to create actionable change toward mid-size body representation in media.

"I try to champion that for other people. I want to be an example of that and show that it's cool and it's beautiful. [On social media] I show my body, I show my life, I show what I represent and what I value with no filter. Whether it's a bikini image or just an image of me out in the street in a cute outfit, I want to show that the normal body size is valued," she said.

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The Chicago native has accumulated over three million followers on Instagram and does not take having such a large audience lightly.

"I have so many followers who are young women, very impressionable and looking at me as an example for themselves," she said. "I try to connect with people, whether it's through DMs or the comments section. I'm often told, 'I have your body type — thank you for showing this.' These people are showing their appreciation towards me and I want to give that love back. Because I have this platform, I think it's more important than ever that I provide positivity for women," she said.

Before Noel was a model making strides toward body inclusivity, she was best known for being the assistant to YouTube sensation David Dobrik.

From her behind-the-camera origins to becoming a bonafide Sports Illustrated star, the past two years have been life-changing for her.

While she admits it can all feel surreal at times, she is grateful that her modeling career has been in tandem with a publication as focused on inclusivity as Sports Illustrated.

"It's the best feeling in the world as a model to be part of a magazine that accepts and celebrates you for being you," she said, adding that this is one of the most liberating ventures she has ever taken on.

"Being part of Sports Illustrated is probably one of the most empowering experiences I've ever had. I'm able to celebrate my body," she said. "They're so inclusive and accepting. They do such a great job of including all women and creating such an accepting community that uplifts each other."

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