Vogue’s worldwide ban on under-16 and too-thin models
Skinny is no longer in style, according to Vogue. The renowned fashion bible has slapped a worldwide ban on the use of under-16 models and those whose appear too thin, aiming to set a standard in the fashion industry.
The editors of all 19 editions of Vogue pledged to only use healthy-looking models over the age of 16 in their editorial pages, in an attempt to change fashion’s approach to body-image.
Conde Nast International Chairman Jonathan Newhouse made the announcement in a statement, declaring: “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 the readers.”
In a six-point pact that will appear in every edition of Vogue’s June issues, the editors agree not to knowingly work with models under the age of 16 or those “who appear to have an eating disorder.”
“We will work with models who, in our view, are healthy and help us promote a healthy body image.”
Editors who signed the pact include Anna Wintour, in charge of Vogue’s flagship US edition, and Vogue Paris editor Emmanuelle Alt, who sparked controversy in 2010 with a spread featuring a ten-year-old girl.
The editors will also instruct modelling agencies not to send them underage models and will encourage healthy working conditions, such as providing food, as well as help structure mentoring programmes for younger models. The magazines will also discourage designers from providing unrealistically small sample sizes of their clothing, which restricts the range of women who can be photographed in them and encourages the use of extremely thin models.
The Model Alliance, an initiative launched by fashion models to campaign for better working conditions, commended Vogue’s actions and hopes other magazines follow suit. Founder Sara Ziff, who started in the industry at the age of 14, said: “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.”
The pact concludes: “We will be ambassadors for the message of healthy body-image, both within the magazine and outside.”