CHANGE FASHION'S SHITTY STANDARDS
CHANGE FASHION'S SHITTY STANDARDS
I run an Instagram page that is a safe space for models. Through my page, many models have come forward about their experiences and they all share a lot of commonalities. I believe that I have a platform to change one of the disturbing aspects of the modeling industry. Out of a poll of 4,481 of my followers, 65% said that they had an eating disorder as a direct result of modeling expectations. I am proposing a way to address this problem.
This petition demands that the fashion sample size is changed from 0-4 to at least 6-8. 0-4, the size that models are being forced to maintain, is not what the models themselves are saying is their own healthy, natural weight. In a poll of 4,019 of my followers, 84% said that at their body’s natural and healthy weight, they have been told that it is too big and they they must lose weight in order to work. There is a difference between someone who is naturally 0-4 and someone who is not. I am not addressing the natural ones. I wanted to see how many of my followers were naturally this size, and the majority of them are not. In order to cut down to the required measurements/ weight, they are having to resort to unhealthy means like starving themselves, restrictive diets, overexercising, and other ways that severely risk their health. The required measurements of a high fashion model is 32” bust, 24” waist, 34” hip, and height ranging from 5’9”-6’0”. For someone of this tall stature to be these tiny measurements, they must be around 110 pounds. This is almost impossible to accomplish in a natural or healthy way. Models are being asked to shrink their bodies down to a size zero when they are around 6 feet tall. For most, the only way to accomplish this extreme is through an eating disorder. Eating disorders can cause permanent infertility, heart attacks, organ failure, and other extreme consequences such as death.
A key reason that this tiny size is the standard is because using less fabric for the sample collections cuts costs for designers. Having a standard size model means they only have to make one size for all of their sample clothing that they use in fittings, runway shows, and campaigns. But to ask every single high fashion model to be that same size no matter height, body type, etc is inhumane. To say every single model has to be this tiny size or else they won’t get booked is not treating them like human beings. To say every single model has to be this exact measurement of 32” bust, 24” waist, & 34” hip is treating them like a mannequin, not a person. The majority of models polled are not naturally this size nor do they think that this size is a healthy size to be.
My proposal of a new standard of sample sizes is a step forward into regulating safety in the modeling industry. Some people may say it’s a profession, so you know what you’re getting into, and if you’re not going to meet the industry standards it means you don’t want to work. However, just because there are no regulations doesn’t mean there shouldn’t be. Models are predominately young, impressionable human beings, and the lack of regulations has consequences. The safety of models is often overlooked in favor of profit. This has been going on forever. It is the standard that has always existed simply because they can keep getting away with it.
Out of 4,753 models, 79% said they have been told to lose weight in order to get a job/ get casted. Out of 5,294 models, 81% said they have been encouraged to restrict their diet. 73% of those models said they did not think that diet was healthy. Out of 5,132 models, 89% said someone in the fashion industry has talked about their body in a negative way. 70% of those models said those negative comments gave them a negative body image that led to disordered eating. I understand that my surveys are not a scientific study, however, I believe it is an adequate sample of models who can come forward and participate in these polls.
These numbers are frightening. Models’ declining health is being swept under the rug. This cannot go on any longer. Let’s demand reform from the fashion industry and change these SHITTY STANDARDS.
This is a cause that I feel my platform allows me to speak out on, however I want to uplift the following voices as well.