She started modeling at the young age of 14 and according to her memoir suffered from an eating disorder for the next several years as she was told she would need to lose almost a third of her total body weight if she wanted to become a real model. So when Crystal took a hiatus from modeling and emerged a healthy size 12 everyone was really happy to embrace her and she was routinely booked for editorials and runway shows.
Then something changed. Around 2010 she started to lose weight which took a rapid nosedive back to 0, she claims it is the result of yoga and hiking.
Crystal attended an event in New York City on Tuesday night practically unrecognizable with a rail thin figure and bleached out hair. “I’ve been a double-zero, children’s clothes, at 95 pounds, and I’ve been all the way up to a size 16 and everything in between,” Renn told “ET” in February. “Now I’m a 6, 8, sometimes a 10, depending on what designer I’m wearing. And that’s an interesting place to be in fashion, where extremes are the norm.” it is quite interesting indeed considering she certainly doesn’t look anything near a size 10.
The 5-foot 9-inch Renn once weighed 95 pounds. At the age of 16, Renn, now 25, moved to New York City from her hometown in Mississippi, signed a $250,000 modeling contract, spent up to eight hours a day at the gym and starved herself.
It was clearly painful. Told she still wasn’t thin enough to be a “traditional” model, she stopped struggling after she turned 18, started eating and began a second act in the plus-size sector. She fluctuated between a size 10 and a size 14. Renn chronicled her struggle with anorexia in her 2009 book “Hungry,” a memoir that made her the face of the push against too-thin models. [ABC]
“I'm a curvy girl. You can't erase it… Women should be able to look at me and think: 'She's beautiful.' But also: "I could look like that."- Crystal In 2009Renn’s dramatic weight loss has sparked some strong reactions from the people she worked with while still a plus-size model. "Everyone rallied around her and now she's turned against us," PLUS Model Magazine Editor-in-Chief Madeline Jones told RadarOnline.com in an exclusive interview. "We have been betrayed by her. You don't lose that much weight doing yoga and hiking! You have to put a lot of effort to go from a 14 to a size 6. We're not that stupid, we know how hard it is to lose weight and she insulted our intelligence."
"I feel pressure -- probably more from any place -- probably from the public and the media," she said in an interview posted on the blog of her modeling agency, Ford. "I think that by placing a title on my head, which is 'plus-size,' and then the picture that these people have created in their mind about what plus-size actually is, I've basically failed you just with that. Because I couldn't possibly live up to that, and at this point in my life I would have to actually have another eating disorder to live up to that expectation." Interestingly enough Ford has now removed the video interview from their website and YouTube.
Since losing weight Crystal has been booking arguably bigger jobs including retailer Lord & Taylor’s new catalogue and also a spread among other girls in the 2012 Sports Illustrated Annual Swimsuit issue. Crystal also walked in Chanel’s Resort 2011 show in St. Tropez. A testament to the industry’s attitude towards the standard “model size issue” was a particularly nasty comment from Karl Lagerfeld after the show. “No one wants to see curvy women. You've got fat mothers with their bags of chips sitting in front of the television and saying that thin models are ugly."
Frankly it is Crystal’s prerogative to be whatever size she chooses to be but when you publicly admit to having an eating disorder for years and write a book about it there are going to be doubts about the healthy state you claim to be in when you go down to such a low weight once again.
On another note Renn’s bleached out hair and brows look way too severe but to her credit this is one girl who will certainly not be put in a box when it comes to her image and for that we absolutely love her. However we have to agree with jezebel’s sentiments, “Crystal looked as though she were the recipient of one of America's Next Top Model's nightmare makeovers in which they bleach a girl's eyebrows away in an effort to get her to cry so that she can be yelled at about how ungrateful she is.”
Crystal With Designer Zac Posen and Model Coco Rocha
Images VIA Zimbio
Crystal Renn In April 2012 (left) And February 2010 (right)
Crystal On ABC's "Nightline"- October 1, 2009
Get To Know Crystal