Kate Ellis, Australia’s youth minister, has recently come up with simple guidelines to prevent dangerously skinny models from appearing on runways and in advertising and fashion photoshoots. Although her restrictions are vague and open ended, it is warming to see efforts being made to protect models and more importantly, young women who are exposed to the images and video of extremely skinny models and are easily influenced. However, these guidelines aren’t laws; therefore, designers and editors can choose whether or not to follow these rules. Because they are not laws, it is unclear how effective the guidelines will be. Yet, Ellis says, “[The guidelines] will empower consumers to tell the fashion, beauty, media and modelling industries what they want and provide greater choice.”
(Reposted from New York Fashion)
- Disclose when images have been retouched and refrain from enhancing photographs in a way that changes a person’s body shape, for example, lengthening their legs or trimming their waist, or removing freckles, lines and other distinguishing marks.
- Only use models aged 16 or older to model adult clothes – both on catwalks and in print.
- Refrain from using models who are very thin – or male models who are excessively muscular.
- Stocking clothing in a wide variety of sizes in shops to reflect the demand from customers.
- Using a broad range of body shapes, sizes and ethnicities in editorial and advertising.
- Not promoting rapid weight loss, cosmetic surgery, excessive exercising or any advertisements or editorial content that may promote a negative body image.
What do you think about models? Does it matter what they look like because they are hangers? Should these “guidelines” become laws?