I’ve long held the belief that when it comes to promoting positive body image, the WORST thing we can do is start picking apart each others bodies. Time and time again, I see women (well-intentioned, intelligent, pro-lady women) tear down models for their ultra thin frames & it makes me sad and angry.
While we have a substantial body image crisis in terms of representation & diversity, the models we see are women who’ve been hired BY an industry that’s looking to sell us a product (note: that formula only works when we buy into it). They are hired specifically for their looks & they have a genetic “advantage” (if you choose to see it that way). But when I think of the abnormal pressure to be ‘thin’ in today’s world, I count them among the victims. I’d have to argue that no other group of women is so heavily targeted, pressured or bullied to be thin, ideal and flawless. Depression, eating disorders and body image issues are issues that plague the modeling industry, and their world isn’t as glamorous as we’d like to believe.
Sexual harassment, industry bullying and abuse also run rampant within the industry. A new organization, Models Alliance, is hoping to change that, and also hopes to encourage healthier practices amongst models, better work conditions and assistance (psychological) for models in distress. Remember that many of these women get into the industry very, VERY young.
Health is what I’m all about. These measures will not change much in terms of the standards of beauty required to make it to the runway: they’ll still be beautiful, tall & thin. But healthy is something I’d like to add to that list. It’s far too common to hear of models dying before the age 30 due to health problems from years of eating disorders, fueled by insecurity, pressure and bullying from a young, YOUNG age.
Baby steps in the right direction.
Excerpt via Blisstree
It’s probably safe to assume that when most people think of modeling, they equate it to an easy job where beautiful girls get to walk around in beautiful clothes all day. But if you ask them, they would likely tell you that it’s anything but the glamorous picture some people paint. In fact, it can include downright deplorable conditions that include sexual harassment, abuse and bullying. Thank goodness models are finally realizing this and fighting back with a new Models Alliance that will hopefully provide the industry with healthier role models.
Model Sara Ziff founded the nonprofit organization because she was tired of the treatment she and other models were receiving. The alliance is seeking to establish workplace standards, that will, among other things, include privacy to stop unauthorized nude photos and clear the backstage area of photographers and non-essential staff when the models are changing clothes. They also seek to reduce child labor infringements and provide advice on how to handle body image bullying and sexual harassment, which she says are all too common in this industry.