Monday, November 23, 2009

Europe Takes a Stand on the Too Skinny

In a society where way too many people are overweight, we also have the opposite problem: people who are way too skinny. This is perpetuated by models that look like they are going to blow away in the wind. Neither is healthy. People should strive to be at an appropriate weight for their bodies, and be healthy and strong.

In a bold move that we can only hope would follow here, Europe has taken a stand with one of their major magazines. As reported in the Minnesota Women's Press:
You go, Europe!
Germany's most popular women's magazine, Brigitte, has decided to ban professional models from its pages in an effort to combat unrealistic social beauty standards. Editor-in-Chief Andreas Lebert said, "We will show women who have an identity - the 18-year-old student, the head of the board, the musician, the football player." He said the move is a response to readers increasingly saying they are tired of seeing "protruding bones" from models who weigh far less than the average woman.

Meanwhile, in England, a UK size 12 model (size 6-8 U.S.), and two other "curvy" women appeared alongside stick-figure models in Mark Fast's London Fashion Week show. Amanda May, Fast's creative director, said the designer 'wanted women to know they didn't have to be a size zero to wear a Mark Fast dress.' Fast is also involved in All Walks Beyond the Catwalk, an initiative that uses models up to size 16 and age 65. Sources: and
It is about time a stand was taken on this issue. I love fashion, or creativity in any form, but models are way too thin and go to unhealthy measures to stay that way. It isn't just about the message it sends to young women, it is the message it sends to all people. Years ago models were a Size 8, now they strive for Size 0. That isn't so bad if you are a small, petite woman, but models are generally very tall and that is extremely underweight.

It is equally cool that this magazine is showing different ages and are coming off of the youth obsessed scene. Beauty comes in all ages and sizes. Showing normal sized women is a much clearer message - and showing athletic women also sends a healthy message.

So, thank you Europe for addressing this issue and making a clear statement. One can only hope it will be followed by others now.

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