Vogue Will Ban ‘Too-Skinny’ Models

Vogue, known as perhaps the world’s largest fashion magazine, has said that it will ban models who are too skinny or underage. The 19 editors of the magazine around the world have collectively made the pact to promote healthy looking models, in a Conde Nast International statement on Wednesday.

Among making casting directors check ids, they also agreed to, “not knowingly work with models under the age of 16 or who appear to have an eating disorder.”

Model Sara Ziff, who was discovered at age 14, stated that:

“Most editions of Vogue regularly hire models who are minors, so for Vogue to commit to no longer using models under the age of 16 marks an evolution in the industry. We hope other magazines and fashion brands will follow Vogue’s impressive lead.”

Models‘ health has been a huge lightning rod in the industry, especially after two models passed away in 2006-2007 of eating disorder complications. Conde Nast International Chairman Jonathan Newhouse commented:

“Vogue believes that good health is beautiful. Vogue Editors around the world want the magazines to reflect their commitment to the health of the models who appear on the pages and the well-being of their readers.”

There is still persistent criticism about the fashion world and the pressures that it imposes on young girls and women, who strive to be as skinny as the models they see in the glossy pages of their favorite magazines. These models present mostly unattainable and unhealthy standards, which do nothing to help with these girls’ body images. Elissa J. Brown, professor of psychology at St. John University and founder of The Partners Program, states that:

“We know that there is an impact for young girls — and boys, by the way — of what is put in front of them in terms of media.”

This change by Vogue in banning unhealthy looking models, is hopefully the catalyst to a changing fashion market that shows more reasonable depictions of healthy women. Brown added that:

“I’m a mother and I hear other mothers talk about the parts of their bodies they don’t like in front of their daughters instead of talking about health. If the message becomes about health, it could have a tremendous impact.”