Hunter McGrady Defies 'Glorified' Body Standards In Painted-On Swimsuit For SI

by Alexa Mellardo

Prepare to have a hardcore girl crush.

Meet Hunter McGrady: She took on the proud title of being Sports Illustrated's “curviest model ever," as well one of the swimsuit issue's Rookies of the Year.

The 23-year-old model is living the dream. McGrady told Elite Daily,

When I found out I got it, I was wrapping Christmas presents. My agent called me… he told me I got it, and I just broke down in tears.
It was such a pivotal moment in my career and in my life.

Shout out to that chic bathing suit made of 100 percent body paint.

McGrady said she stood up for the base coat, and artist Joanne Gair “outlined an amazing bathing suit that outlined my body so well.”

The painting process took a total of 12 hours before it became the masterpiece we all saw. McGrady's call time was at 2 am, but she actually managed to fit some prime snooze time in between some of the painting.

It's clear she knows how to multitask like a pro.

WORK IT, girl!

McGrady is not only a gorgeous woman on the outside; she embodies all the beauty a role model should have on the inside, too.

Courtesy of Hunter McGrady

She began modeling when she was 16 years old, following in the footsteps of her mom, aunt and grandma, who were all models.

Although she said she “wasn't able to make it work as a smaller-sized model,” about four years ago, she got into plus-size modeling. Since then, she hasn't stopped making an incredible mark.

McGrady is a major advocate of the fact that stretch marks, acne and cellulite aren't flaws, ladies. Everyone deals with one – if not all – of them.

That's life.

Our main girl of the hour believes we should all love and embrace our bodies for what they are. When it comes down to it, what we see in magazines and other media outlets is the “glorified version of that person,” as she put it.

It's so important to not compare yourself. You don't need anybody to look up to you besides yourself.

McGrady worked her way to the top... but not without tackling road blocks along the way.

Courtesy of Hunter McGrady

We all deal with rejection, struggle and hardship in life, but these are the things that truly make us stronger.

McGrady opened up about how, when she was 16 years old, she showed up to a photo shoot, but they didn't let her put on their shirts.

McGrady was a size 4 at the time, and she was turned away because of her body:

I felt so embarrassed and uncomfortable.

Well, look where the powerhouse woman is at NOW.

McGrady is trying to transform today's beauty standards.

James Macari

Things got real when she said,

It's time we start realizing women are beautiful regardless of their size. They're beautiful because of their size.

Although McGrady considers the term "plus-size" to be a form of segregation, she believes we're definitely on the right path toward blurring the lines for models.

"I'd rather just be called a model,” she says.

While speaking about Sports Illustrated's swimsuit issue, McGrady said there are many different ethnicities and body types represented throughout: "Every woman can look in there and feel connected.”

When all is said and done, "We only get one of these things we call bodies.”

Courtesy of Hunter McGrady

In a society that puts major stock in how personal image is portrayed on social media, McGrady keeps it real by saying, "You have to accept what you have and who you are."

People lean on media, and that's not a good way to live your life.

Preach it, girl!

Focusing on how we look on social media is superficial when compared to everything else going on in the world today.

Appreciating your body for all it has to offer will make you a much happier person. Don't try to be anyone other than yourself.

You can either love your body and love yourself, or you don't.
Courtesy of Hunter McGrady

Hunter McGrady definitely has all the qualities of a complete and utter boss woman.

And to top it all off, the stunning model works with a charity called “1 Heart 1 Mission” that supplies orphans in Haiti with food, education, water and clothes.

Hunter, girl, you are a true inspiration to every girl and woman out there. We love and respect you so much for it.