Danielle Zavala was a teacher for five years and a nanny for two, before becoming a BBW model.
She works only 20 hours a week posting content on OnlyFans and Curvage.org, but makes more money.
Zavala spoke to Insider about why she made the career move.
This as-told-to article is based on a conversation with Danielle Zavala, a BBW model in the New Orleans area. It has been edited for length and clarity.
If you'd asked me five years ago, I wouldn't have guessed I'd become an OnlyFans model.
I made the career switch after being a nanny for two years and a pre-K1 teacher for five.
I loved working with kids and being a lead teacher was the best job I ever had.
But the hours were long. I was working around 40 hours a week and was starting to feel a little burnt out.
Once the pandemic started I felt like things really got out of control. My school closed a couple of times due to coronavirus cases, and I didn't feel safe or cared for.
The teachers continually butted heads with the director to get safety concerns for ourselves and the children taken seriously. Even though the teachers had to work much harder and deal with more stress during the pandemic, we felt as underappreciated as ever and made no extra money.
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I was earning less than I had as a nanny. My salary wasn't the main reason why I quit but it was something weighing on my mind.
So I quit my job in May, primarily because of concerns about catching the coronavirus, to focus on modeling.
I'd started making money from modeling at the end of March. At first, I wasn't sure what angle to pursue. I thought maybe I could do something sexy but I would probably have to lose weight first.
But after I started posting on Instagram, I realized that there was a huge audience that loved my body exactly the way it was. I realized there was actually a market I could tap into by just being myself.
I work around 20 hours a week but make more money than I did at the school.
(Insider viewed documentation verifying Zavala's gross earnings. She earned approximately 50% more in October 2021 from OnlyFans, Curvage.org, and Cash App tips than she did in four weeks over April and May 2021 at the school.)
And I'm in control of my own career and earnings. I can make my own schedule, and don't have to worry about catching the coronavirus.
In the autumn, I also had a brief stint working at a craft store to make a little extra money, but I quit within a month. They were understaffed and tried to use me to fill in the gaps. I was being overworked and had to deal with some rude customers, too.
The same day I quit the retail job someone told me that they thought doing online sex work is "exploiting myself." The work isn't exploitative, especially when compared with these low-wage positions where they overwork and mistreat employees.
And I don't have to let people treat me poorly. I can set my own boundaries with customers and if they break them, I simply don't have to do business with them.
For now, I am going to keep doing online sex work. I plan on increasing the hours I spend on it so I can buy a car.
In the long-term, I've thought about returning to school to maybe study biology, or setting up my own soap business. But no matter what, I don't ever want to go back to a job in retail, the service industry, or an office. I just want to keep pursuing interests and things that I enjoy.
Read the original article on Business Insider