So recently, best friends Maria Castellanos and Denise Mercedes turned into fashion influencers and have started turning heads in New York City. As we had written about their TikTok challenge “Style Not Size” recently, this challenge was where the 2 girls with totally opposite body types dressed up in matching outfits. As these short videos when viral on social media, Denise, the size 14 model was able to grow her Instagram audience to over 1 million followers. Talking about her friend, petite size 2 Maria says, “She inspired me and I gained confidence in myself, and it then became about inspiring others around us, too.”
Denise, becoming a captivating influencer overnight, said that it all came together back in 2019 when “My friend Maria and I would pose for photos wearing the same bikini. It did so well and people reacted so positively to it that we continued doing it here and there.” As their followers started to grow, the duo posted their first TikTok video, and that got over a whopping 1.5 million views. The elated style influencer went onto say “Once TikTok had become popular, we decided to do a fun video and that’s when it went viral.” When they reached that fan base, they realized that they had to find an appropriate hashtag for their body-positive movement. This was because many women thought that what the two models were doing was so inspiring. So, they let their followers vote among #StyleNotSize and #ThroughThickAndThin, and without much fuss, the first option won.
According to Denise, the duo’s key takeaway from this movement is dressing however you wish, and loving your body. She also went on to add that we should stop comparing ourselves to others. Loving yourself, and feeling confident in yourself is what makes anyone shine from within. Denise and Maria were elated for the amount of positivity that they received through social media, and the beautiful plus-size model went on to state that “the fact that we can inspire so many women to feel confident and be themselves makes us want to continue this movement.” To top it all off, Denise shared with us her perfect autumn outfit for women with curves which included boots, a shirt, a leather jacket, and mom jeans, while adding, “that’s always my go-to.”