Body Shaming, Thinspiration and the Fashion Industry

Tommy Hilfiger RTW Spring 2016

Gigi Hadid walking Tommy Hilfiger RTW Spring 2016

It seems as though any type of ‘body shaming’ is totally acceptable and rarely challenged in today’s society, the practice of criticising individuals publicly for being too fat or, less frequently – too thin. Who can we blame? The fashion industry for the “thinspiration” motives that they sell as the ‘normal’ body type through fashion ads, runway shows etc perhaps?

With it being fashion month, in London headlines during fashion week 18-year-old Holly Bair was described physically as an ‘alien’ or ‘praying mantis’. Her skinny frame has begun to appear on ‘thinspiration’ websites – sites/blogs that encourage women to lose weight and how being thin is viewed as ‘beauty’, little do people know it can lead to a high risk of eating disorders. The stereotype of tall, thin, Caucasian features needs to be revamped to display a ‘real’ representation of all body types and beauty.

Moly Bair

Molly Bair walking Diane Von Furstenburg RTW Spring 2016

In April, France banned agencies from employing models with a Body Mass Index (BMI) under 18 as well as illicited ‘thinspiration’ sites, and images in magazines altering photos of subjects to looking thinner.

Gigi Hadid, who recently walked Milan Fashion Week posted a message on social media recently for online body shamers with a positive yet inspiring message behind it. Hadid being the not-so stereotypical model of the expected industry on the runway, critics on Instagram felt the need of shaming. Standing up for herself and pointing out her ‘flaws’.

“No, I don’t have the same body types as the other models in shows,” Hadid wrote to her 6.5 million-plus followers. “You can make up all the reasons you think I am where I am, but really I’m a hard worker that’s confident in myself, one that came at a time where the fashion industry was ready for a change. I’m just doing my job. I represent a body type that wasn’t accepted in high-fashion before, and I’m very lucky to be supported by the designers, stylists and editors that I am: ones that know this is fashion, it’s art; it can never stay the same.”

She added, “Yes, I have boobs. Yes, I have abs, I have a butt, I have thighs, but I’m not asking for special treatement. I’m fitting into the sample sizes. Your mean comments don’t make me want to change my body, they don’t make me want to say no to the designers that ask me to be in their shows, and they definitely don’t change the designers opinions of me.”

Kudos to the hottest model of the time, and a overall celeb! I adore Gigi’s bravery stand to ‘shamers’.

Gigi Hadid on Instagram


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