The fashion industry has been constantly surrounded by controversy because of the extreme skinniness of its models. This unattainable and distorted ideal of beauty results in terrible consequences for certain social groups, who while aiming to follow the example set, inevitably find themselves with psychological and eating disorders that endanger their health.
Catwalk and anorexia go hand in hand, but it seems that the whole scene has started to change. At some point, something, somewhere, has “clicked” - anorexic isn’t sexy!
Spain, Israel, Italy, and now France have decided to abolish the old ways by establishing a minimum BMI for every model to fulfill in order to participate in fashion shows. This minimum BMI value is 18, which means models must be around 56kg weight for 175cm height.
In Spain specifically, models under 18 years old are not allowed to participate in shows, and the girl’s makeup cannot make their faces look emaciated.
In Israel, they go further and have decided to control the use of Photoshop in advertisements through what’s been nicknamed as the “Photoshop law”. This law obliges those responsible for the ads, to indicate it expressly if they’ve used image manipulation to make the models look skinnier.
It’s common knowledge that Photoshop and its fake reality have taken over the media. But, despite the awareness of this fact, people still fall into the trap - mostly girls and young women - and set themselves goals that risk their physical and mental health.
Sometimes the modifications on the photos are so well done that they pass unnoticed. However, Internet’s database - and the work of paparazzis - provides us with enough material to prove this distortion of reality.
On the left, two photos of Chanel Iman - one of the Victoria Secret models -. The first one is a stolen photo that shows her real body, and the second one is how the media presents her to us. Overlooking the mosquito bites on her skin, how can these two photos correspond to the same person’s body?
The “thigh gap”
But the craziness has kept spreading and creating new trends that are just the result of another obsession - performed and fed by the Fashion industry - to fit in what is believed to be “the perfect body”.
One of them is the much-talked about “thigh gap”. For those of you that don’t know, the thigh gap is the space between some women’s inner thighs that remains when standing upright with the feet touching.
The origins of this trend are vague, although everything points to the Fashion industry. Getting a thigh gap has become the obsession of females in their teens and early 20’s all over the world, who are ready to starve themselves and even resort to surgery in order keep their thighs far from each other. What they don’t know - or they refuse to believe - is that this physical feature relies purely on genetics, and is almost impossible to obtain if you’re not born with it.
Such a polemic matter didn’t leave anybody indifferent, and a backlash against this matter rapidly developed from different sectors including the media, health organizations like the US National Health Disorders Association (they launched a website to support healthy body image, and attitude to food and weight) or international plus-size models like the Australian Robyn Lawley, who stated during an interview that the thigh gap “is just another tool of manipulation that other people are trying to use to keep me from loving my body”.
As well as the backlash, parodies about the subject didn’t take long to come to light. I’ve picked one that I really enjoyed. It’s performed by the ladies from JustBoobs with a very ironic, sharp and witty humor.
Also fitness professionals pronounce themselves against “the myth of the thigh gap”. In this case, the two personal trainers claim to be driven crazy by this matter, and create this video to debunk this trend. It’s worth a watch.
Nowadays skinny is NOT trendy any more; healthy and strong is! Feel sexy empowering your body and soul with a healthy diet and a peaceful balanced state of mind, and be ready to enjoy all the goodness that life offers. Look after your body and your mind; look after yourself and be happy.