A London based Plus Size model and law student. Teiko is the organizer of a pageant called "Miss Plus Africa. She is Ghanaian-British and was once a skinny kid, who never thought she would be a plus size model. Not only is she putting her mark on the fashion world she's creating a foundation for herself by enhancing her education. THIS BLACK GIRL ROCK!
Interview Via Bella SugarTell me about Miss Plus Africa. How did that come to be? Miss Plus Africa was borne out of passion and frustration! In 2006 myself and Joi Onyeukwu decided to establish a pageant that celebrated women with curves, and the African culture which has almost become synonymous with poverty and disease but is so much more than that. Joi and I also wanted a way to give back to our continent, with a percentage of funds generated going to organisations that support development in Africa. I love being part of this because I know firsthand that it's not the easiest thing when you see the same type of woman being the prototype for beauty all day, every day. The women who have come forward are plus size and proud! I love seeing that because its so easy to light up when someone asks if you’ve lost weight and slum into depression when someone suggests you’ve put on weight, No one is promoting obesity, but as long as you stay healthy there is nothing wrong with being a bigger woman. Miss Plus Africa is an organization that celebrates this fact, encouraging women to embrace themselves
You’ve said that you’ve felt pressure to lose weight. I think most women feel that same kind of pressure because of the bizarre cult of thinness that reigns in fashion/beauty. Any advice for regular women as far as self-acceptance is concerned? It's so strange: The fashion and beauty industry celebrates us and inspires us but sometimes it creates the opposite effect. Self-acceptance is something I’ve unfortunately struggled with. I would know exactly what I wanted to change about myself to an obsessive point, and all I can really say is start from the inside and ask yourself what really determines your happiness and inner peace. I’m happy now — not because I’ve dramatically changed my appearance, but because I committed time and energy into accepting myself, my relationship with God has brought me a long way, and I’m making better choices and happier now.