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In the fashion world, size 6 can mean "plus size"

Princella Talley

A fashion model walks the runway

As sad as it is true, being more than a size 5 can categorize you as a plus size model in the industry. We know that thin is in in most cases, but this takes things to the extreme. Separating the “kind of beautiful” that a woman is based on her dress size has been a part of fashion for as long as many of us can remember, but these types of standards are more than just surprising; they are extremely unhealthy.

This may not seem like a big deal to a woman that isn’t setting her goals on strutting the runway or posing for fashion advertisements, but one has to consider how close the relationships are between models, designers, and consumers (us). Our favorite products and clothing are most often displayed on models, and whether or not we realize it; we are sometimes sold on items because of how good it looks on the model that’s wearing it.

The standards of beauty that these women are having to uphold will certainly have an even greater impact on teens and pre-teens who view modeling as an amazing career and tend to look to successful models as inspiration. Many young ladies want to be glamorously beautiful and noticed by everyone so it’s scary to think of the damage that could be done to a girl’s self esteem just because she may be curvier, whether it be due to genes or just a few extra pounds.

What lengths are some of these models going to in order to stay so small and what lengths will some normal women go to just to keep up with them?

Adrianna Lima recently revealed her extreme dieting methods. Even worse is that more than a few models have died from eating disorders, such as 28-year-old Isabelle Caro, whose story was a very heartbreaking one.  As recounted by ABC News, “the average fashion model weighed 8 percent less than the average woman. Today, she weighs 23 percent less. Plus-size models have shrunk, too. A decade ago, plus-size models averaged between size 12 and size 18. Today, the majority of plus-size models an agency boards are between size 6 and size 14.”

The fact is that most normal-sized and healthy women are not as thin as fashion models and products are not being marketed fairly to the everyday women that contribute their money that keeps designers in business. Whether a size 2 or 22, a woman should feel good while shopping and even better about the way she looks in her clothes.

Some people in the industry understand this concept and are speaking out. Plus Model magazine has a great write-up with beautiful images to match on the subject of weight and beauty. We can only hope that other bigwigs in the industry will take note so that we can all embrace one another’s appearances and use it as a form of empowerment to celebrate the unique beauty and diversity that is a part of every woman.

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