It was recently announced that super-chic fashion designer Ralph Lauren, had decided to bravely hire a plus-size model known as the beautiful Robyn Lawley. Now to you and I, that decision would be sensible and highly anticipated if anything. However to the highly critical fashion industry, this was an incredibly daring move that could potentially sacrifice the status of a designer. Only when a company has created such a prestigious reputation like Ralph Lauren, does this move become less of a risk.
As a woman who regularly reads fashion and gossip magazines, I am faced with multiple covers and spreads that only cater to a smaller size of woman or simply document the sizes of people in the public eye. Most magazines attempt to educate us into believing that we can give off the appearance of being ‘smaller’, ‘tighter’ or ‘slimmer’. These articles can affect a woman’s self esteem in such a detrimental way that many people understand but chose to ignore. Why should it be so taboo to even hire a plus-size model? Should there even be a category to begin with?
Unfortunately, there are many influential and prominent fashion companies who regularly continue to use underweight models for campaigns supporting their latest product. Furthermore, if these designers and businesses sustain this image of underweight models it means that as a consequence, plus-size models have an even smaller margin for success. What is considered ‘normal’ simply becomes absurdly distorted to consumers and producers. Over recent years the Council of Fashion Designers of America have created and developed regulations for fashion companies to follow in order to produce healthy role models. These guidelines are suggestions and not binding unfortunately, which enables anyone to simply ignore their presence. For example some of the regulations are as follows: Educate those in the industry to identify the early warning signs of eating disorders, during fashion shows provide healthy meals and snacks, keep models under 16 off the runway and don’t allow models who are under 18 to work at fittings/photo shoots past midnight.
Now, these rules are sensible and necessary, however there is no mention of what is a healthy weight and state or how these rules can actually be enforced. Hopefully, with the topic of plus-size modelling becoming more popular and recognisable, the label of ‘the perfect body’ can be stripped and renamed. www.plus-model-mag.com is a plus size-model magazine/website that solely focuses on the beauty of curvy and voluptuous, stunning girls, there’s little airbrushing of rolls and it’s simply beautiful.