Remi Bader reflects on her year of unexpected growth

Remi Bader is an In The Know fashion contributor. Follow her on TikTok and Instagram for more.

When I was growing up, my mom would beg me to go shopping with her and I would throw a tantrum about it every time. I hated shopping. When I did go, I’d cry at the end of every visit to the store. It never felt normal to me. I always thought, isn’t shopping supposed to be a fun activity? But for me, it was a nightmare. My aversion to shopping made me never want to make an effort to buy new clothes, so I would continuously wear clothing that I had grown out of and that I didn’t feel comfortable in. 

These aren’t just childhood memories for me, though, because I continued to feel this way until I was 25 years old.

Around April 2020, my weight really caught up with me, and I found that I couldn’t fit into any of my jeans or pants anymore. At the time, I already felt like there were no good clothing options available to me at my size, so I never made the effort to seek out a new wardrobe that might fit me better. I had always struggled with being a size 10/12, so the fact I had become a 14/16 really made me believe it was now impossible to look and feel cute in clothing. 

The thing is, just because I didn’t shop growing up doesn’t mean that I didn’t always love fashion. My dad works in the fashion industry, I’ve interned in the fashion industry and I took classes at the Fashion Institute of Technology for three years and loved it. Still, I’ll never forget the day during my fashion internship when I setting up for a huge high-end fashion show, and I called my mom after and told her I didn’t think I wanted to continue to build a career in fashion because I just didn’t fit in. Everyone sitting in the audience was skinny and put together beautifully in head-to-toe designer, and I felt like an outsider.

After that, I decided to pivot my entire career path and ended up working my first year out of college in public relations at Bravo. Following that, I did partnership marketing in the music industry. I told myself that I could always turn back to fashion if I ever had a change of heart. 

My life took the biggest turn ever this past year, though, when I was let go from my job. TikTok became a part of my life shortly after.

It was in late Summer 2020 when I started to go to stores, buy seven to 10 items at each store and wait to try them on until I was in front of my camera. From this experiment, I started to realize that there were actually items out there that fit my body. I had the realization that maybe it was time to laugh instead of cry about the items that didn’t fit my body. I thought maybe it was time to stop blaming myself for the way that the fashion industry operates. It’s simply not my fault! 

Photo courtesy of Remi Bader

After my videos started taking off, I decided to brand them as my “REALISTIC clothing hauls.” I did this because I noticed that so many other people on social media would post clothing hauls that were just the clothes that “looked good” on them, but never showed the items that “looked bad” on them. I wondered why people were hiding what’s real. We should be showing the truth to the world, so that we can all relate to one another a little bit more. 


Zara Haul – the good and the BAD ##real ##plussize ##curvy ##zara ##transparent ##haul ##fashion ##curvemodel ##truth

♬ original sound – Remi Jo

Fast forward, and I am now a full-time content creator and part-time curve model where every single day I get to do a little bit of everything that I love. Fashion is back in my life, and I have finally found a way to enjoy it. I help numerous people on a daily basis feel better about their bodies, I get to be in front of the camera every day, I get to work with press and different partners, I get to say exactly how I feel and know that people are listening and, on top of that, I get to write again as a fashion contributor for In The Know

If you had told me nine months ago when I was sitting at home after having lost my job during a global pandemic and having gained 40 to 50 pounds that I would become a signed NYC curve model and a well-known content creator with over 1.3 million followers, I’d have told you that you are very much lying. It’s truly wild.

The biggest lesson that I learned from the past year is that life takes us in the direction we’re supposed to go in without us needing to direct it. The more we try to make a plan and figure things out, the more things tend to go the opposite way. 

It will all happen the way it’s supposed to. I promise.

If you enjoyed this article, check out this viral TikTok that demonstrated the harmful effects of Photoshopping on social media.

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