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Debate : Should 'Underweight' Models be Banned?

elena miro.jpg

Image: Size 12-24 Models on the S/S 2007 Milan Catwalk from Designer Elena Miro

• Should Fashion Parades Include Women of a Variety of Sizes? (and sizes above a size 0)

• Would You Like to See More Average Sized Models Used in Fashion and Media Campaigns?

• Does Fashion's Obsession with Skinny Models Affect How you Feel About your Own Body? Does it Affect Your Actions?

• Do You Think Model Size Should Be Regulated?

Take part in the debate and leave your comments here...

Reader Comments (48)

I think that the point should be in having all kinds of models! Women come in all sizes - 0, 5, 12, 24, etc., all body shapes and this is what should be promoted! Healthy lifestyle & loving your body, not starving yourself or eating more to look like your idols!
January 17, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterVictoria
I remember looking at magazines as a kid and thinking something was wrong with me because I didn't look like that. Luckily, I had a crush on a guy who asked me what happened to me and how I had gotten to skinny for him. Then I went to the Renaissance faire where I listened to the men there talk about how they were afraid they would break skinny girls *cough*. Then I grew up. Years later, both myself and every person I know who is capable of turning off the tv, putting down the magazine, and think for themselves, wants to feed those starving girls. I have cellulite; I have a pooch; I am healthy; I am tone; I have a realistic, non-airbrushed body, and my friends and I skinnydip with nary a thought to "physical perfection". Size 12, I look anorexic. Size 16...I'm beautiful, baby.
Fashion industy, try and keep up, will you?
January 25, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterMyOpinion
I don't think it's fair to regulate weight for models. I'm a naturally thin girl and I've tried to gain weight for years to no avail. Sometimes it feels like there is just as much discrimination towards petite girls. I've been called anorexic among other less-than-becoming names and it's just as frustrating. I would love to be curvy, but I can't. We should all be accepted, "fat" and "skinny" alike.
January 30, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterKayleigh
I think more women of varying shapes & sizes should be represented on the catwalk, along with the thin women, just to balance things out & present a truer picture of how many of today's designs look on real women, no matter how they look. I, for one, have never kept up with fashion phases, preferring to use my own imagination & creativity in what I wear, but I have often seen women wearing clothes that do not suit them, but are fashionable, which makes them appear as 'fashion victims'. True representations may encourage women to enjoy & appreciate their own bodies more, without making them feel abnormal or they should lose weight. Lots of women have lost their shape through no fault of their own, such as childbirth, operations & metabolism, not through lack of exercise & eating all the wrong foods, which some people seem to think is always the case. Some women's magazines appear to be portraying shapely women more in their fashion articles, but tend to be aimed at middle aged women, rather than the younger end. People's shapes have changed somewhat over the years, with changing diets & more sedentary lifestyles at work, say to how they were in the 1950's & the fashion industry & tailors do not seem to take these factors into account.Maybe our schools should teach young girls to look after their bodies & how not to fall into the fashion 'trap' which may prevent some of them becoming anorexic or even suicidal because of their varying shapes.
Men's magazines often portray men as Adonis' which does nothing for 'normal' men, but men still don't have their size shoved down their throats daily like women are, who are expected to accept this as a regular thing. Thin women on catwalks often appear anyway, as no more than coat hangers in a dress shop.
February 7, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterTracey
Ok well don't get me wrong I love fat people I have fat friends but unfortunately the fashion world just isn't kind. I do not think it will take simply a lot of inspirational quotes and heart warming adverts to change the fact that girls have to be thin so that no attention is payed on the thighs or hips of legs of fatties like size 12. Sorry but size 12 is fat...there's nothing I can do about that, because I have the eating disorder. With my eating disorder, I think of size 8 as obese. Tell me about it.
If I am absolutely blunt I think that half of the people working in fashion or around that industry, models or not, suffer from one kind of eating or mental disorder or another. Unfortunately when you suffer anorexia you can't help but percieve everything as fat. I think I'm fat, and my BMI is 15. So when girls think they're fat at size 0 and designers are moaning when the sample sizes don't fit then imagine the trouble when they are popping out of their clothes. I think that half of the designers are also anorexic. I mean has nobody noticed the rise in anorexia in men? Almost all of my gay friends have anorexia or bulimia. Or anabel (both) like me. The fashion industry is just the only industry and incorporates the disorders into beautiful iconic imagery and art which any normal member of the public couldn't think up in a million years. Good for them. I only know so much because I am a young fashion photographer. See? I'm not even a model. I've done some modelling here and there, on catwalks and stuff. I was most certainly NOT asked to lose weight. I lost weight before then and after then, modelling makes little difference and besides I was thinner than most of the models anyway.
Not to mention the fact that the moment is not quite the same on the catwalk with LARGER women.
I mean where will any perception of beauty waste away to, if not with our beautiful anorexic models? Keep fat people out of the fashion business, it's only going to end in tears.
February 8, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterSIZE ZERO AND PROUD
Yes, I believe that models should imitate reality. And what is reality? Is it size zero? We all know and realize that it is not.! As a society representing the best of health and mental well-bein, wr must represent all sizes from 0 to 16, as being valuable in who they are. If we do not, we will have a multitude of problems, and delusions. Reality-check, and continue to reality-check to give all - everyone a chance to be unique - beautiful, for who they are.
June 15, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterJackie
I think that fashions obsession with skinny models has definatly made me a little more self conscience about by body. I am an over weight woman, wear a size 16. And i know that every womans body is different, and that our jean size is just a number, and doesnt make a difference in our beauty. But some times when i hear about these girls wear a size zero I do get very self conscience about myself.

I just wanted to say that this site is very helpful to me, i was very low about myself and my weight. But this site has made me feel like im not alone when going thru these stereo types, that i actually believed myself at one point. Now i definately feel much more confident about my body =]
June 6, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAshley Robin
I think that fashions obsession with skinny models has definatly made me a little more self conscience about by body. I am an over weight woman, wear a size 16. And i know that every womans body is different, and that our jean size is just a number, and doesnt make a difference in our beauty. But some times when i hear about these girls wear a size zero I do get very self conscience about myself.

I just wanted to say that this site is very helpful to me, i was very low about myself and my weight. But this site has made me feel like im not alone when going thru these stereo types, that i actually believed myself at one point. Now i definately feel much more confident about my body =]
June 6, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAshley Robin
omfg! those ppl aent large! thy're perfectly normal ppl! the catwalk juss has too many scrawny models on it and they thuink that's normal? well they are certainly wrong,g they are a bad influence on teens and evn litle girls for that matter! i think they should be banned from the catwalk and pl shud bring in normal weight models! there are ppl of all shapes and sizes in this world! not juss size 0!
May 26, 2009 | Unregistered Commentersayesha
Real Women have curves !!!
December 4, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterManfred
I think that regulating weight for models is a great idea. what i think they should do is take the height and weight and sum it up so if your 5' 8" your average would be 130 lbs. see what i mean. because im 13 and 5' 3' and i weight 107. some of it is muscle because i dance but my friend is anorexic and she went to a fashion show and thats what caused it. i pray for her every day. she could die any minute. but what im saying is that we should regulate models weights.
March 4, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterOlivia.
I don't think underweight models should be banned because I really do know several young women (19-25), who are just blessed with an ungodly fast metabolism and long beautiful limbs. However, I believe it should be required that any agency should have equal representation of sizes -NOT JUST "PLUS" and "SKINNY". I'm so tired of that because I'm 5'7" and a pretty curvy girl myself but I really don't ever surpass about an 8. Why can't we just display every size, (00-18) and stop labelling them as "plus" or "skinny". What about showing all the differences and allowing people to make up their own damn minds?
March 13, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKat
I have been writing an article on this for a school assignment; in the form of a newspaper article, and I have discovered many different opinions on it. To Christie who above foresaid: "While I agree that diversity in body types and shapes should be embraced by all of us, we must be careful not to create body-image issues for those of us who are naturally thin and flat-chested. If you have a high metabolic rate, putting on weight can be as difficult as losing weight is for people born with larger frames." Yes, this is true, but think, is size zero a "natural" weight? I have never seen a woman who has been a size zero who hasn't done any form of dieting to become this way. Here is a snippet from my article: "In the 1960's the waif-like look became popularized by the supermodel Twiggy Lawson. This was the first time in history that an underweight woman became the standard for the ideal body image. You may ask me what is “unhealthy” about Twiggy’s figure; but please, on the other hand tell me what is healthy about her figure!"
This is just one point. Please, tell me, what happened to the voluptous, rubinescent women? They had curves, and the odd bit of fat didn't seem to bother anyone. What is wrong with having a little bit of fat. Marilyn Monroe was once seen as the healthy weight range [she was a size 14] and nowadays she would be seen as overweight? How so? I'm sorry if I've offended anyone but this is my opinion based on facts that I've read such as: "Young girls are more afraid of becoming fat than they are of nuclear war, cancer, or losing their parents [Colorado Health Institution.]” What is this saying about our generation?
I am only 15 and I can already see what a consumeralised and gulible generation we are. We buy anything that advertisers shove down our willing and ignorant throats. Please, advertisers, remove this warped idea of "beautiful" from your minds.
March 17, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterSarah
I think we aught to be thinking about activity levels rather than shape and size frames. There is so much research that argues both for keeping body adipose and for loosing it. And most of the time peoples perception of health is mostly based on appearances.
When actually looking fit and healthy doesn't ever guarantee a healthy person. Now if a person is so inactive that when they do move to get up of the sofa ect, whether large or small, and it's an effort and they are sweating or fainting, then surly they aren't healthy. If you were to make a model of any size run a few miles, who would last longest? I bet the skinny one would be too weak to finish- no energy reserves, see.
April 20, 2010 | Unregistered Commentercj
It's a very hard issue...
but actually, nowadays we can see so skiny models its hard to believe! And many women try to look like them, but the thing is, what many people doesnt know, is that there are 14 year old models!! walking in the runway like if they were actually grown up women. So the obsession of brands and designers reach a shocking level. So must of us women, think that this girls actually have a skinny body because they have a strict diet or excercises routines, but the truth is, their bodys havent grown because they are just 14 year old girls!
So no matter what we, normal women do, to loose weigh, we will never have the body of a 14 year old girl.
Bodys are very different one from eachother, what runways must regulate, is the healthy the body is, no matter the size it has.
being skiny doesnt mean you are healthy, but neather being overweight is.
June 1, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAdriana
Wow, the world is incredibly obsessed with size, beauty and fashion. Of course us girls will love fashion, but it's about what you wear not what size it is. It's about being healthy and having curves, not being stick thin and constantly unsatisfyed with your food intake. These two models are absoloutley beautiful, stick thin models will hopefully grow out of fashion. When we buy our clothes, we want to see them on somebody with an actual human figure. A size 12 is the idea weight for someone 5'4 and up, anyone below that should be a 10 or an eight if it comes to 4'7, 8 etc. For especially shorter girls, an 8/6, but your must be healthy and not too heavy or skinny..simple as...I'm not an expert.
June 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJoy Nelson
I would rather there are more average size models....
September 10, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterjessie
I think that that fashion industry would make more money if they had a variety of sizes shown during shows including the ones in between plus sized and cat walk like the 4-9 size range. It's and art so there should be plenty of room for everyone including thin medium and big mamas, If you guys want there ought to be more plus sizes then I encourage you all to start designing for that frame. I design a lot of clothes for myself and I'm the model, if you looked at my fashion shows you would think that true beauty has pink hair and is 5 foot and piercings.
September 17, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterjenbea
My friend is one of that team. Im so happy for him. Its required a good qualification to become a part in that team.
October 11, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterWhiteMelon
the best way is waiting till the end of the word.
October 31, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterugg shoes

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