'Plus-Size' Model Crystal Renn Sheds Pounds, Fuels Criticism

Model Renn has slimmed down to a size 8 from a size 14.

BySheila Marikar and Luchina Fisher
February 09, 2011, 1:03 AM

Feb. 9, 2011 — -- Most models put on a pound and the critics pounce. Crystal Renn has the opposite problem.

In an interview released this week, the sometimes "plus-size" model spoke out about losing weight and her struggle to stay in the fashion world.

"When this whole weight loss thing happened, I think that a lot of people wanted to point their finger at somebody," Renn said in an interview posted on the blog of her modeling agency, Ford. "I think that they wanted to find a conspiracy where there absolutely was none."

The 5-foot 9-inch Renn once weighed 95 pounds. At the age of 16, Renn, now 24, 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 memoir "Hungry," a book that made her the face of the push against too-thin models.

Renn's a tough pill to swallow because she currently defies categorization. Photos from one of her latest ad campaigns, for Lord and Taylor, lack the curves and volume that won her fame. She's now a size 8. Her agent, Gary Dakin, told ABCNews.com that Renn "is in between the two" sides of the modeling industry -- plus-size and otherwise.

"She reintroduced exercise back into her life after finally feeling she was ready to," Dakin wrote in an e-mail. "Hiking and yoga are part of her life now. She is healthy and feels amazing right now."

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