Lip service or sea change? Skeptics wonder whether Vogue magazine’s vow to ban models under 16 or those of any age with visible signs of eating disorders is more hype than health.
The 19 editors of Vogue around the world made the promise Thursday, beginning with June issues and including editions in America, France, Britan and China. They also encouraged fashion designers to reconsider “unrealistically” small sample sizes that make ultra-thin models necessary in the first place.
Vogue didn’t address the widespread industry practice of digitally altering photos that critics believe promotes an impossible standard of beauty.
While the new initiatives are certainly good news for models, Susan Linn of the Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood said Vogue didn’t go far enough.
“If Vogue was really concerned about the well being of girls in terms of their health, then they would have done what Spain and Italy did and use only girls who have what has been deemed a healthy Body Mass Index.”
The health of models, especially their weight, has been in the spotlight over the past few years, especially after the death of two models from apparent complications from eating disorders in 2006 and 2007, but the focus, until now, has been on runway fashion shows.
The primary fashion organizations in Italy and Spain banned catwalk models who fall below a certain BMI level. Israel’s government passed an anti-skinny-model law earlier this year.
The Council of Fashion Designers of America adopted a voluntary initiative in 2007 emphasizing age minimums and healthy working environments during New York Fashion Week. London Fashion Week designers signed a contract with the British Fashion Council to use models who are at least 16.
Anna Wintour, Vogue’s U.S. editor-in-chief, was instrumental in crafting the CFDA’s guidelines.
Still, there is persistent criticism that the fashion world creates a largely unattainable and unhealthy standard that particularly affects impressionable young girls.
Audrey Brashich, a former teen model and ex-editor of a teen magazine, called the Vogue announcement a “tiny baby step of progress,” at best.
“The cynic in me feels like they are simply grandstanding while really just throwing a bone to an audience that is getting ever more savvy and tired of the tricks of the trade,” she said.
Linn agreed, adding: “It’s not going to help the millions of young girls who turn to these magazines to decide what they should aspire to look like.”
Conde Nast publishes other magazines, including Glamour and Allure, but a spokeswoman said there are no current plans for these guidelines to be adopted across the company.
Glamour said in a statement Friday the magazine’s policy already was not to book models under 16 or those who appear to have an eating disorder.
The Hearst Corp., home to Elle, Harper’s Bizarre and Marie Claire, said in a statement that it supports the CFDA guidelines, adding:
“Good health is something we strive to promote in our magazines, both in our fashion and beauty stories and in our features. We make every effort to educate our readers and present images that reflect strong, beautiful women.”
Elissa J. Brown, professor of psychology at St. John University and founder of The Partners Program, a specialized therapy program for children and adolescents, said she was cautiously optimistic about Vogue’s attempt to prioritize health over weight.
“I don’t think the shift will come in the next couple of weeks, and I don’t think the shift will come unless the entire industry participates,” she said. “I would like to see what comes next.”
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This Week’s Celebrity Instagrams (10/15-10/21)
31 photos Launch gallery
1. Just a NY girl with BIG dreams....
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2. HAPPY CHILDREN=QUALITY PARENTING. We don't always see eye to eye on everything and that's normal. We're human beings. But we come together and do it right for what's important, the kids. We are not enemies, we are parents. And we are parents 1st. S/O to @monyettashaw for making Mason's bday memorable. S/O to @itscrystalsmith at home taking care of our other lil' Prince. ❤️❤️❤️ THIS IS WHAT CO-PARENTING LOOKS LIKE. #Blessed #Happy #AboveTheDrama #BiggerThanUs
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3. So happy to finally be able to share with you all that I’m the new Global Brand Ambassador for @Revlon! Follow my day on RevlonSnaps. Yay! Choose Love, Everybody! #RevlonXCiara #chooselove #ad
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4. Glam on point!!!@makeupbymotoko & @shaylinjoneshair #easybreezy @lifetimetv #beachesmovie #january2017 😘
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5. ✨True love ✨📸: @jessiemarrerophotography
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7. Today was not easy..but by the grace of God we all got through it. Words cannot express our gratitude for all of your Prayers, Positive thoughts and Support for us throughout the years. Tommy will be missed but most certainly never forgotten...And PLEASE don't ask "Where's Martin?.." he was there too...just not in this picture. Lol! God bless you all.. #LoveConquersAll #MartinShow
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9. West coast get ready for #RockyHorror. I will be live tweeting again. #letsdothetimewarpagain
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10. #THEKEYS pre order yours now ... Available everywhere #NOV22 #WeTheBest 🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑
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11. We about to ROCK at #KCABlackBall!! All for our life-changing effort to end 🌎 AIDS.
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12. Today's #SNAPJACK is brought to you by @yazzthegreatest 😂😂😂💋💋💋
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13. Damn girl you kinda old to be headed to the Go Go. You coming in at the age they leaving. LMAO
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14. Daddy daycare B-Boxin with @acewellstucker @shopraisingace
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15. #FBF Naviyd & URV "LIL MONSTERS"
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16. HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ONE OF THE BIGGEST LEGENDS IN OUR HIPHOP HISTORY! @snoopdogg CONTINUED BLESSING AND LOVE FAMILY!!!!! REAL OG!
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17. Thank you for a beautiful night VSU! Let's do it again! #HOMECOMING
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18. Had a great time this morning with my familia Erica, Griff & Truth!!
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19. Check out my interview on @essence facebook live. #inmyownwords #nycpromo #day2
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20. #She💋 #tbt #TheCoveAtTheAtlantis #DawgPawsAndAll
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21. Bae #retailtherapy
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22. Why me and @coryhardrict got the same pose... and notee... new mouth #naked
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23. When my husband is my personal 'hype-man'! it kills me every time! 💜😂 #WHATNOW #lostfiles📷
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24. Diggy Simmons
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25. Hand full of @jacquieaiche 💙💎💍 @esnail_la 💅🏾
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26. SuperSoulers! You can watch my interview with Carl Lentz live from my Facebook page, tomorrow at 11a ET| 8a PT. #SuperSoulSunday
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27. 💋 .. When the friendship is easy like Sunday morning. ☀️
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28. Sunday mornings are the best........... hugs and cuddles with my angel
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29. #huggar16 #hellohuggars
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30. My gym is everywhere!.. #RnBMoney #TheGeneral 📸: @twelvepastseven
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31. Nothing I would rather be doing... Rocko setting up our movie, Romelō working on a puzzle & Laiyah singing and sharing all she's learning at school... I'm so grateful for the joy they've brought into my life ... Praying for peace , joy & love in the home of EVERY family ♥️ #HeadScarfPJSunday LOL 😂
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