We at Project HEAL are very upset and disappointed in the recent Alexander Wang Spring 2013 campaign featuring model Malgosia Bela, and call for it’s removal.
In the United States, approximately 10 million women and 1 million men suffer from a clinically significant eating disorder at some point in their lives. Eating disorders have the highest mortality rate of all mental illnesses. While the media itself does not cause eating disorders, promoting hundreds of unhealthy and unrealistic images to people around the country inevitably causes many of them to engage in damaging self comparisons, leading to body image and self-esteem issues that can encourage the development of an eating disorder. And this image goes even further than most, glorifying eating disorders and the anorexic body.
I developed anorexia when I was 10 years old, and struggled for much of my early adolescence and teenage years. Images like this propelled me forward in my unyielding quest to lose as much weight as possible. They confirmed what my very sick anorexic mind was already screaming in my head – emaciation is beauty and glamour. This dangerous message almost robbed me of my life.
We at Project HEAL believe that the media and fashion industry have a responsibility to promote healthy and realistic body images, and do their part to prevent eating disorders and encourage positive body image and self-esteem in young people. Alexander Wang, we urge you to think about the millions of people around the country currently struggling with eating disorders, and the millions more media and fashion consumers who may go on to develop them. Take down this ad.
We invite people to join us in our message to encourage Alexander Wang to remove this ad, and to promote healthy and realistic body images. We urge those who would like to show support to share this message with friends and family, repost on facebook and twitter using #healthyimage, and sign our change.org petition.