When she was scouted at the age of 14, Crystal Renn was told she’d need to drop a significant amount of weight in order to become a successful model, which led her to anorexia.
She became one of the biggest names in fashion, working for the likes of Chanel, Jean Paul Gaultier and Agent Provocateur — but little did anyone know she was hiding such a scary secret.
After years of suffering from an eating disorder, the brunette bombshell, who hails from Mississippi, reassessed her life. She gained 70 pounds, became a U.S. size 12 and re-emerged as a plus-size model.
Her constant struggle to stay “thin” was partially the inspiration for her 2009 book, Hungry: A Young Model’s Story of Appetite, Ambition, and the Ultimate Embrace of Curves, which she wrote at just 23-years-old.
Now at 28, Crystal reveals why she decided to publish her memoirs at such a young age.
“I had an unquenchable need to succeed at such a young age, to make something out of myself and to experience the world,” she says in a new interview.
“I wanted people to question preconceived notions about what it means to be beautiful and the dangerous lengths some are willing to go to attain this.”
Crystal admits she used to have “warped thinking,” but learned to love herself in order to help herself and others change their views on beauty.
“Evolving my mindset opened me up to an entire world of possibilities and a peace that I had not previously known. So I felt I had to pass it on.”
According to reports, the stunner is now a healthy size 6. Her advice to women everywhere?
“Be your own best friend,” she tells The Telegraph in the U.K.
“I always encourage women to learn how to travel, go to the cinema and dine on their own. It is a fast track to becoming more confident and self-reliant. As a model I have been challenged to do that regularly, and it has made a huge difference in my life.”