Vogue editors agree to stop showing too-skinny models
May 11, 2012 by Deanna James, LPC, CEDS in Castlewood In the News This week Vogue announced that it will not longer knowingly show images of models who are below a healthy weight, "appear to have an eating disorder" or who are younger than 16. To see the full story on this initiative visit the Examiner.
While Castlewood supports this initiative, I have to wonder if anything will really change? Vogue has failed to mention their guidelines for how they will choose who is at a healthy weight, or who "appears to have an eating disorder." This begs the question, will those that struggle with purging or those at a healthy weight be ignored? Will those that struggle with binging and purging fall through these criteria and be allowed or dare I saw encourage to stay in their eating disorder? The counsel of fashion designers in America (CFDA) launched an Eating Disorder awareness campaign in 2007 and set out warning signs of eating disorder to all designers, photographers, and other professionals in the field. But they continued to allow images of unhealthy women to be on the cover of every magazine and allow women who are possibly very ill to walk the runway.
Our hope is that this initiative will encourage others to step forward and follow suit. And that they will develop criteria for health and assessment of eating disorder. We also hope that those women in the fashion field who are struggling with an eating disorder will be encouraged to seek help and offered assistance at a treatment center. The CFDA should work on true ED awareness: They should bring in experts to discuss warning signs and treatment options an a regular basis, as well as develop strict criteria for who can be in an image, how an image gets photo-shopped, and who can participate in runway shows. True ED awareness and prevention campaigns might work to encourage these young women to seek help if an eating disorder has already developed, it might discourage restricting or other ED behavior, and it might help prevent some body dissatisfaction which is pervasive throughout the industry. We support VOGUE for the step forward and hope that the industry can catch up with what is truly needed.