Kate Upton on Bikini Culture in Florida: “You Are Ugly If You Don’t Have a Curvy Body”

Kate's Nude Moments
All the times Kate Upton has stripped down.
Apparently, being skinny in Florida is a bad thing.

According to bikini model and Sunshine State-native Kate Upton, no one in her hometown is a fan of the “waify” look popularized by Kate Moss in the 90s. In fact, the 22-year-old says there’s a whole different perception on what’s hot and what’s not down there in the south.

“When I first started modeling, I was a normal catalogue model,” Upton tells Elle UK’s September issue. “Then, I became a woman, and I was really excited about becoming a woman. Because I’m from Florida, it’s all about being in bathing suits. It’s a different view of beauty there. You are ugly if you don’t have a curvy body. And I didn’t have one, and then I got one, and thought, ‘Yessss!'”

And then people say: ‘Oh, wow, you’re healthy,'” she adds. “And you’re like, ‘Wait – what? I’ve been begging for this body my whole life!'”

kate upton elle uk september 2014
Kate Upton on the cover of Elle UK’s September 2014 issue. [Elle UK]

Upton, who catapulted into superstardom after appearing on 2012’s cover of Sports Illustrated’s Swimsuit Issue with nothing but a tiny red bikini, has always been a staunch supporter of curvy bodies — especially when it comes to her own.

When the Sun on Sunday quoted the buxom blonde on saying she “wished [she] had smaller boobs” earlier this year, Upton immediately backtracked and cleared the air about her comment.

I love my body,” she said. “I always feel incredibly grateful for what I have, but there’s times when all women don’t feel their best.”