The thought of modeling had never crossed the mind of Gwilym Pugh of London, UK, while he was growing up. As an adult, he sold insurance for a living. He probably thought he would grow old selling insurance but little did he know that something as simple as losing weight and growing a beard would have a huge impact on his life.
It was back in 2006 when Gwilym started his insurance business. Overweight and wearing glasses, he spent his days behind the desk, running his small insurance brokerage. Feeling unhappy with his life and rather insecure with his appearance, he decided to change his lifestyle to lose weight.
2006 | 2016 #TransformationTuesday A picture says a thousand words…. Coming from being 22 years old, overweight, plagued with injuries, and unhappy barely leaving the house, I’m happier and healthier than I ever thought possible and doing things that didn’t even cross my mind to dream of.. I like what Les Brown said: “When you want something out of life, don’t worry about how you’re going to get it. ‘HOW’ is none of your business. The most important thing is to hold the vision” There’s a couple of people in particular who have been integral to the transformation of my life. I hope they know who they are. But I also want to thank each and everyone of you guys following me. I wouldn’t be here without you 😊
His fitness plan was actually quite simple. He began each day with fasted cardio, changed his food choices, and started counting his steps. He chose to avoid diet fads and stuck to his simple program. In month, he lost 42 lbs (19 kg).
Gaining self-confidence, he joined a band as guitarist. But it was through a conversation with his barber that his life would take a really good turn.
“My barber at the time said that if I’m playing guitar I ought to have a beard. So I thought it would be a laugh to grow a big ginger beard,” he mused.
Amused over this change in his style, an amused Gwilym documented his beard growth on Instagram just for laughs.
So today has been an absolute whirlwind!! I woke up with a banging hangover after the @vo5 @nmemagazine awards to news the article about my personal journey has pretty much gone viral around the world 😱 I’m so incredibly grateful to everyone commenting kind words and supporting me, I think it’s easy to criticise people, especially online, but it’s 2018 and we need to start lifting each other up! Literally anything is possible, even if you’re not aware of it yet. . . PS.. huge thank you to @instagram for making my journey possible!! . . . . . . . #beforeandafter #transformation #gingerbeard #weightloss #fatlossjourney #redhead #gingerhair #gingerman #igtransformation @instagram
“I had been noticed by some photographers on Instagram probably due to my red hair and beard. The idea of modeling was so out of my comfort zone,” he revealed.
Photographer Thomas Knight featured him on a book entitled, “Red Hot” while Jonathan Pryce placed him on “100 Beards”.
But his modeling career would officially start when he was discovered by a talent agent for London-based agency AMCK while he was out shopping. Soon, he would join the Fashion Week runway and appear on fashion magazines like GQ. He would also pose for brands such as Bud Light.
Today, he is among the sought-after world class models in the industry and is an ambassador for David Beckham’s House 999 grooming project. Who would have thought a portly insurance seller would become a famous model, eh? Congratulations!