Jordyn Woods on What’s Wrong With the Term “Plus-Size”
If you're one of Jordyn Woods's 5.6 million Instagramfollowers, you already know she's so much more than Kylie Jenner's BFF and an honorary member of the Kardashian-Jenner family. Woods is a model, body-positive role model, and beauty influencer in her own right.
InStyle caught up with Woods at the opening of St. Ives' Mixing Bar in New York City to talk summer skincare, the best makeup tip she's learned from her beauty-obsessed friends, and what's wrong with the "plus-size" label.
What summer skincare tips do you swear by?
It’s important to stay hydrated and always put on moisturizer and sunscreen—even when it’s overcast. Also, exfoliate because your skin can get really dry. I like using the St. Ives Scrub ($4; Target.com). It’s been around forever, and I always remember my mom having the Apricot one stocked in our medicine cabinet.
You travel a lot for work. What makeup products always make it into your luggage?
Brow gel because my brows get out of control, moisturizer, concealer, lip balm, and lip gloss. And I have this Tom Ford cream bronzer ($82; Sephora.com), which is great for doing a no-makeup makeup looks. I also have lash extensions, which really cuts down on time and products.
It seems like everyone has lash extensions. I know they can be high-maintenance: do you have any tips for making them last?
Once you start, you just can’t go back. They’re a big commitment but I love them, and I’m probably the best out of my friends at keeping my lashes good the longest. To make them last, you try to not sleep on your face, which I’m not too good at. It’s also important to brush them, not put oils on or around them, or wear mascara a lot.
Your friends are just as into beauty as you are. What’s the best tip you’ve learned from them?
The thing about beauty is that you’re constantly learning new things every day that you didn’t know. Through watching my friends do their makeup, I learned how to properly blend eyeshadow. That’s the hardest thing out of everything to me.
No matter the backdrop, your Instagram photos are always great. How do you find the perfect lighting wherever you go?
You have to develop an eye for it. Wherever you are, you have to find a window or the best spot to make the best of it. There are moments when I’m walking and I’m like, ‘wait, take a picture of me right here.’ Natural lighting is the best, or golden hour when the sun is setting, because it makes your eyes brighter and everything else just glow.
Should you be facing the natural lighting or have your back to it?
Unless you're going for the silhouette look, I think facing it is better nine times out of 10.
You’ve recently got into fitness. What made you want to start working out?
Working out became my therapy, and I didn’t start doing it to look a certain way. Exercising became my daily detox. I don’t go on my phone for one or two hours in the morning when I get up and work out. It sets the tone for the rest of my day energy-wise and mentally. It just so happened that I became addicted to it and started seeing results.
I don’t really like working out by myself because I get bored, so I either do SoulCycle, yoga, or pilates. If I don’t go to a class, I have a trainer I work out with.
What’s your go-to exercise?
We do a lot of squats—weighted and jumping. We try to do a full-body work out every time.
What are your thoughts on being labeled a “plus-size” model, and the phrase in general?
The whole idea of the plus-size world is weird and controversial because, with me losing weight, I'm still technically considered “plus-size.” I believe anything over a size 8 is considered plus-size. I’m a size 8/10 and people comment on my photos saying ‘oh, you’re not modeling plus-size clothing anymore.’ I’m genuinely trying to be the best version of myself by being me, so I shouldn’t have to limit what I’m capable of doing just because of a label in an industry. Luckily, I’m in the position where I can just be me, but it’s unfortunate for the girl who relies on her modeling check each month to be a size 14, and not be able to live a different lifestyle if she wants to, or who worries about losing weight. I don’t feel like there should be any boundaries on what you can do with your own body, or what you should look like.
I don’t really know how people can fall into the category of plus-size because someone could be a size 8 and be super tall and skinny, or someone could be a size 8 and be really short and have thicker legs. We’re all made uniquely and differently.
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Especially on Instagram, everything is so filtered that it can be hard to tell what’s real versus what’s fake. Do you have any advice for girls that are struggling with their body image?
That’s the thing that you have to realize about social media. A lot of it is just for the ‘gram, and people aren’t living that lifestyle. You can’t really compare yourself to anyone else, because your individuality is your greatest gift. I will go on Instagram sometimes when I’m not having my most confident day and I’ll be like ‘oh, there’s so many pretty girls. I want my hair to look like that or this.’ I have to take a second, and look at myself and what I am, and not try to compare myself. It’s okay want things for yourself, but it’s not okay to compare yourself to other people.
Become the best version of yourself that you can be, and don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t do something.