Plus-Size Dating Advice: Be the Heroine in Your Own Love Story

Quani Boyd has learned from countless dating horror stories so you don’t have to.

Life coach and dating expert Quani Boyd has always been a big reader, but she never felt like she could see herself in the stories she read. She decided it was time for plus-size women to become the heroines of their own stories, so she set to writing The Dating Chronicles of a Fat Bougie Chick, a novel she hopes to finish up by March.

We caught up with Quani during a recent photo shoot to see if there was anything she could teach us about dating from her in-the-field research and years of “singleness” coaching. Here’s what she had to say.


1. Be true to yourself

It seems easy enough, but for a lot of women, they feel like they have to play a role in order to be desirable. I think it’s important to not allow that to influence you in dating. Be proud of who you are. If you’re confident, be confident. Eat the way you eat, dress the way you dress, speak the way you speak—just ensure that you’re being true to yourself.


2. Understand your own worth

What I find as a plus-size woman is that a lot of men approach me with the expectation that I have lower standards. That it’s easier. If you don’t set standards and honor yourself, nobody is going to do it for you just because that’s what you deserve. Be very clear about what you want.


3. Set goals before you start

A lot of women feel like they just have to go with the flow, go wherever the other person is leading. So I tell women in general, but specifically plus-size women, that you need to set goals. If the intention is to date, don’t accept anything other than that. If they want to see you, it should be on a date. It’s very important to date with intention, and not just go wherever the tide leads you.


4. Date for the fun of it

Go to a place you enjoy going and where you feel the safest—where you feel like you can most be yourself. I go on dates to arcades all the time because there’s no set time that we have to be there. When I talk to women who are frustrated, I’m like, that’s because you’re putting too many expectations on it. I fully expect when I check my inbox to have 50 messages that are trash. But there’s a good chance that I’m gonna get five or six serious men—and that’s not a bad number. So, I don’t have any expectations going into dating. I date to date. You get to know how to interact in these situations and become a better dater. It’s going to heighten the chance of you meeting the person you want to meet.

Quani Boyd

"Singleness" Coach & Upcoming Author

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Have any great dating tips? Share this post with your advice!

Get to Know the First Class

Introducing the first class of Dia Dominos—leaders here to share, support, and help our community shine.

In summer 2018, we launched the Dia Domino program to celebrate and elevate our amazing community members. The Dia Dominos are here to support and inspire anyone on their style journeys. They start conversations, answer questions, and give their honest feedback about their Dia&Co experiences. Here are the incredible community members who applied to join our first class of Dia Dominos!

The First Class

Hillary G., NY

Tanya C., FL

Meagan P., TX

Natorra M., GA

Nellie H., CA

Deborah G., TX

Becky U., AZ

Linda B., KY

Jana J., SC

Michele H., WA

Terri S., MI

Julie M., PA

Debbi B., IL

Megan D., FL

Crystal P., NY

Kathy P., CA

Christy F., OH

Danielle Y., IL

Jess H., TX

Betty K., OH

Kate P., MN

Nikki W., GA

Stephenie B., NC

Tia G., WI

Courtney C., IN

Haley G., NC

Diane K., CO

Natalie H., CA

Laura M., WI

Michelle P., PA

Laurin W., GA

Erin H., MT

Dana B., MI

Kharia H., MD

Deborah T., NY

Iris P., AL

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Kathy P., CA

Jackie S., KY

Regina W., NC

Jessie F., VT

Francie C., WI

Jennifer S., VA

Brittany D., FL

Lynn J., AL

Kelli S., KS

Lisa H., TX

Danielle F., MD

Jaci Z., GA

Nikki P., MA

Eileen S., NY

Kim B., CA

Chrislyn B., NV

LaTara B., OK

plus-size style evolution black cold shoulder top

Chris P., FL

Angela C., NC

Emily F., OH

Erin B., WI

Jessica S., TX

Hayden H., WI

Egan G., MD

Echo S., GA

Tracy M., AZ

Brittany K., NY

Laura S., NC

Sandi K., WI

Merrilee D., NY

Aubrie P., WI

Betsy C., TX

Sue B., OR

Keri M., IL

Mikal S., IL

Tressa P., LA

Kirstin M., TX

Jennifer C., VA

DeShantel O., PA

Andrea D., MO

Kari C., FL


Interested in becoming a Dia Domino? Enter your info here to get notified when
the second round of applications is open!

Meet Yasmine Arrington

This future “empowerment mogul” is here to inspire you, uplift you, and encourage you to live out your life’s true purpose.

yasmine arrington red dress

Meet Yasmine Arrington, the 25-year-old non-profit founder, beauty pageant winner, radio show host, model, and pastor. Read on to learn the connection between her many accolades and why you should expect to see her gracing magazine covers one day soon.


I grew up in Washington, DC proper. When I grew up in the ‘90s, DC was affectionately known as the “Chocolate City.” I attended public schools through my grade school years in the city. I loved it so much that I’m still there today.


Personal Style & Fashion Icons

Queen Latifah was one of my fashion icons. And Oprah, then and now. There were two characters on Martin Lawrence’s sitcom, Pam and Gina, and I was inspired by their style. Then also Tyra Banks, Jeannie Mai from the daytime television show “The Real,” gospel singer Tamela Mann, and celebrity makeup artist Kym Lee, just to name a few. My grandmother was also definitely a fashion icon for me. She’s just very classy and very cute, very colorful. She had neon T-shirts. She’s just so elegant and classy, and whether she’s dressing up or down, she’s always got a splash of color. Her clothing always fits her well.

Today, my style is versatile and changes depending on if I am in relaxation mode or working professionally. Overall, my style is girly, city-chic, professional, classy, vibrant, and curve-complementing. When I’m speaking or preaching, I wear stylish suits or dresses and unique high heels. When I’m in New York on modeling jobs, I wear leggings, palazzo pants, jean jackets, tank tops, and cute T-shirts with sparkly slide-ons or sandals. Every day for me has a different flavor and assignments, so it keeps things interesting and allows for flexibility.

My biological father has been in and out of jail and federal prison most of my life, so I understand the challenges that youth with incarcerated parents face.
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The Founding of ScholarCHIPS

My biological father has been in and out of both jail and federal prison most of my life, so I understand a lot of the challenges that youth with incarcerated parents face, and what that does to you. A lot of times, there’s a stigma and taboo. There’s a burden of shame. ScholarCHIPS is a non-profit organization I founded in 2010, as a junior in high school. At the time, I had applied for and was accepted as a fellow in a program called LearnServe international (LSI). LSI challenges high school fellows to identity social issues that matter to us that we want to see change or improve and then come up with a “venture project,” which is a creative solution to a social ill that we can initiate. The social issue, on a macro level, I identified was mass incarceration. Through my grandmother’s suggestion, I came to the idea to start a scholarship and mentorship program for youth with incarcerated parents who are pursuing their college degrees.

ScholarCHIPS provides college scholarships, mentorship, and a support network to youth with incarcerated parents who are pursuing their college degree. ScholarCHIPS has a $2,500 scholarship and a $250 book award. Both of these awards are renewable for all of our scholars who remain enrolled in school and in good academic standing. Our goal is to see our youth to and through college, helping them to overcome any additional challenges they may face. We even started a Student Support Fund to further help our scholars who need to buy new laptops or fly home for the holidays. To date, we’ve had about 51 scholars, and we’ve awarded over $100,000 in college scholarships. So far, we’ve had 13 graduates. It’s really amazing. The vision is that, one day, ScholarCHIPs will grow on a national level—because the need is there. There are over 2.3 million youths in the United States who have an incarcerated parent.

All of my work, in some form or fashion, is ministry. It’s inspiring people to be more and do more.
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The Common Thread

When I was in college, I got into modeling. I started going to these workshops with models, just to see their confidence levels. Then I started auditioning for runway shows and walking in runway shows. This was the first time outside of growing up that I had ever been surrounded by such beautiful, voluptuous, badass women. It was like this discovery stage of, who am I outside of where I grew up? What’s my purpose? I had already started ScholarCHIPS, but then I started to be a part of this community that was so welcoming and powerful and empowering. I continue to carry that with me through life.

All of my work, in some form or fashion, is ministry. It’s inspiring people to be more and do more—to aspire past your current situation or circumstance. If we become complacent or stagnant, it means we’re not growing, and if we’re not growing, we can’t possibly be maximizing our usefulness in the world and operating in our purpose. For me, operating in my purpose as a Youth Pastor, preacher, businesswoman, and model encourages and uplifts women of all ages to become curious enough to explore their passions, talents, and gifts for the healing and betterment of others.

Everything I do stems from my own personal experiences—parental incarceration, my mother passing away at an early age. My mother had a lot of self-esteem and body-image issues, and I saw that really weigh heavy down on her. My grandmother was a very strong woman. A role model for me of strength, of resilience, of love. When I was growing up, I was very active in the Protestant Church, and I think that it helped a lot—having all of these women who were family women, and strong and intelligent. I think what also made a big difference for me was when I discovered this sector, this aspect of the fashion industry that we call “plus” or “curvy.”

There are a lot of young people, particularly in DC and Virginia, who lack exposure to positive role models. For me, it was just a natural progression. Principals and teachers asked me to come to their schools. University professors have asked me to speak to their students. Pastors have asked me to come to their churches and speak to the youth. With my radio show and podcast, “Millennial Minds,” I intend to break the negative stereotypes of the millennial generation and expose people to the amazing social change-making work and inspiring stories these young people have. I also lead a Life Group through my church called the Woman Code, where this small group of young women meets once a month to discuss books—and draw connections from our reading to our own life struggles and Biblical instruction. I love leading groups like this and mentoring women because I can see and hear their spiritual growth, and a growth in their confidence and well-being. When I preach or speak to a group, I always make sure that there is a positive and uplifting message that people can take with them and apply to their daily lives.

I tackle my dreams by writing down my goals, objectives, and steps to how I’ll accomplish each one.
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What’s Next

I definitely want to become a mogul of sorts, but an empowerment mogul. So not like, “Wow, look at this young African-American woman who came from an urban community and had the incarcerated parent and now she’s got an empire, blah, blah, blah.” I want to establish myself as a national philanthropist. My number-one dream is to be the host of a national television talk show and to be on Oprah’s “#SuperSoulSunday” to share my story. I would love to be featured on and get spreads on the covers of some high-profile magazines, like Ebony, Essence, Teen Vogue, and TIME, and to speak and preach on national platforms like TEDx, Essence Festival, and Woman Thou Art Loosed. I will be publishing a few books in the next few years and starting a clothing line. One day in the near future, I will start a family with a God-fearing, loving, intelligent, humble, hard-working, well-balanced man. I’ll continue to travel the world, expand my impact through service and philanthropy, and maybe one day be a pastor of a church or bishop of a district. I would love to receive a medal from the White House and a Nobel Peace Prize. That’s a lot—but I take it in baby steps. I tackle my dreams by writing down my goals, objectives, and steps to how I’ll accomplish each one.


Nikki Gomez/@thenikkigomez
Daniel Zuchnik/Getty Images
Makeup: Eve Chen/@melangenyc


What inspires you to accomplish incredible things? Share this post with your own story. 

P.S. If you love Yasmine’s “She Are the Champions” tee, buy that style and more at!