By Kirsten Humphreys
Let’s be honest, we are all guilty of judging models that grace the fashion magazines we read, store front campaigns we shop from and runways we watch. We judge based on appearance, and whether the model is socially acceptable ‘model material’. Universally, it’s known that there are certain rules and standards a model requires – it is a profession after all. These rules and standards became apparent to me, during a recent conversation I had with a photographer.
What I found to be most disturbing was the fact people categorise models into a different category to what ‘normal humans’ would be categorised as. The photographer I was talking to made this very clear, by affirming this statement is one hundred percent true:
“Models have a completely different relationship with themselves to what us normal humans have- they are required to always maintain perfect standards. Achieving these standards means its obligatory they maintain a healthy diet- we don’t want their weight to fluctuate.
They also must exercise regularly to ensure they maintain a fit aesthetic. Likewise, it’s beneficial that they use the best skincare products available, to keep their skin radiant and breakout free. And let’s not forget, their hair must always be immaculately shiny and healthy.”
Yes, models are genetically blessed, but they also hold an immense amount of pressure on how their supposed to look. Heaven forbid if a model’s hip measurement increases by two centimetres, oh and let’s declare world war three if one tiny defective pimple arises on their face. Let’s also be reminded that their hair is constantly being tweezed, straightened and pulled daily, resulting only in damaged hair *gasp* the shock horror.
Everything, right down to the way a model conducts themselves, is being intensely monitored. God prohibit if one thing falls out of place within these ‘rules’. Hot tip everyone – models are humans too, and yes, just like everyone else, their bodies are expected to change.
It’s only natural that a teenage model will gain more curves and develop a women’s body as she becomes older. To project that she must maintain a teenager’s body for the sake of her career as it ‘makes the clothes look better’, is not only sickening but extremely detrimental to the model’s health. It’s also only natural for everyone, no matter how innately blessed your skin may be, to get at least one tiny, defective pimple on their face.
Let’s just remember that being human requires no list of ‘rules’, especially ones that are so destructive to an individual’s mind. The fashion industry is constantly judging and critiquing models, based on their appearance, so they can get immaculate images. But let’s be honest, most of the time the images of the model get computer enhanced, so the company can sell their product.
And i’m sorry, but am I the only one that finds this completely disturbing? That we expect all these requirements from models, but don’t give a shit about how they feel? As much as some models radiant with the illusion they aren’t phased by this, I can assure you in the confidence of their own minds, they are in an internal war. I can profoundly say this on behalf of models, because the ones I have been able to converse with, have told me just such.
So, to everyone out there that’s willing enough to enforce these rules- let’s make this ‘game’ a fair playing field. Models deserve freedom to grow and evolve into the women they are supposed to become. We should be embracing imperfections, and with imperfections there are no rules. In finishing this article, I’ll leave you with one controversial saying I just so happen to love- Be a rule breaker, perfection after all is boring.