Meet the first plus-size model to appear on the side of a bus for a sexy campaign that has nothing to do with plus-size fashion. Clad in black lingerie and a gemstone necklace, Jillian McClary of Beaver Bank, Nova Scotia, sizzles in the ad, which promotes Halifax Boudoir, “a photo studio specializing in intimate, boudoir-style portraits for clients of all sizes,” according to CBC News.
But wait: There’s another “first” to this story. The ad counts as McClary’s first-ever modeling gig, as the 34-year-old raven-haired beauty was always “too shy” to model, according to the publication. “I’ve never been asked to model before, but I never had the confidence,” she told CBC News. But Halifax Boudoir was certainly confident in her, as it selected McClary out of 300 applicants who applied within an hour, the article says. For the campaign, Halifax Boudoir had a call out to women between the ages of 28 and 45 who wear sizes 12 to 20.
The slogan for the campaign in which McClary stars is “Be Empowered,” which makes McClary the perfect face for it. The new model is finally finding confidence, strength, and beauty within herself. “Part of me feels like, what’s taken so long?” McClary told CBC News. “To finally see that beauty’s everywhere and in every size and shape. It’s good to be a part of that.”
Surprisingly, McClary did her own hair and makeup for the advertisement, showing some serious skills with smoky eyes, perfectly arched brows, and a shiny mane without a single strand out of place. Her steamy shot not only sells the service well — who wouldn’t want to look that great in a boudoir shoot? — but perfectly embodies the company’s motto to “celebrate every body type.”
The fashion industry is ever so slowly including plus-size models in mainstream ad campaigns without making a fuss about it. In August, Glamour pointed to an H&M ad that quietly co-starred plus-size model Katy Syme. And of course curvy superstar Ashley Graham became in February the first curve model to be splashed across the cover of the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issue.
Meanwhile, McClary’s ad is set to run on Halifax Transit billboards for one month, according to the article. She’s hoping to be a body-confidence role model for young women, especially those who lack self-esteem like she once did — and particularly for her daughter. “I want to send a message to my daughter,” McClary told CBC News. “I want to send a message to women, in general, that beauty comes in every shape.”