"I updated my measurements and turns out I now have a 42 inch hip aka a size 12," Kelley shared

By Karen Mizoguchi
Updated May 19, 2016 09:00 PM
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Credit: Andrew Toth/Getty

When Leah Kelley first started in the modeling world at age 19, she was forced to gain weight to land jobs in the plus-size industry.

But these days, the model, now 28, is not defined or constrained by her changing size, in fact, she’s proud to gain weight.

“I have gained maybe 15-20 lbs or so since the beginning of the year (I don’t have a scale so it’s hard to tell),” Kelley wrote on Instagram Thursday. “And updated my measurements and turns out I now have a 42 inch hip aka a size 12.”

The beauty, who was previously a size-8, credits her modeling agency, Wilhelmina Models, for encouraging positive body image. Along with her caption, Kelley posted two new digitals of herself demonstrating what a model looks like before makeup, hair, lighting and Photoshop.

“I love being with an agency that is so supportive of my weight fluctuations and never criticizes me for my ever changing size, just accepts me as I am at any given point and adjusts how they market me accordingly,” Kelley continued in her post. “I get to be who I am. I might gain more or lose more, I don’t know and I am so grateful that I don’t have to care either.”

Kelley continues to motivate and inspire women and men with her social media presence. In a previous Instagram post, she shared words of confidence and self-love writing, “I was, and am not worried about what size I ‘should’ be. No size defines worthiness, value, hotness, or beauty.”