When it comes to lingerie models the first people who come to mind are the VS Angels. With their slender frames, unblemished skin, and sky-high legs, they’re what many girls strive for every day. As they walk the catwalk year-in and year-out, dancing along with singers in tow and looking (let’s face it) perfect, it’s hard to not want your own set of wings…
“I think it would be good to show a variety of sizes, but I don't think that will happen with most fashion brands. Maybe high street stores, but not high fashion and catwalk shows. The industry is what it is, especially VS angels, they're never going to change." ~ Alex Farnworth, Model
But whilst the high fashion and catwalk shows stick to what they know, our high street and independent stores are taking the world by storm. They’ve listened to what people want and have begun embracing the body confident culture that is proving very popular.
Out with the photoshop and in with the cellulite and stretch marks. No more shame for being a clothes size that is deemed ‘unattractive’, or needing XL bras because otherwise, quick frankly, your boob might make a cheeky appearance in an unexpected and inappropriate location.
Until recently the thought of anyone with any body shape modelling lingerie seemed, whilst empowering, a far off ideal. With people being disgusted by cellulite and stretch marks… which FYI most of us have! It was a breakthrough when brands, like Misguided, started to take a step back from editing and showed their models for who they are, no photoshop just pure natural beauties.
With my on-going struggle with Body Dysmorphia (which you can read about on my personal blog,) it was an empowering feeling coming across Willow Layne Lingerie. Seeing the diversity within their models brought out an inner confidence in me too. I looked at girls who were the same size as me and admired how perfect they looked, without even seeing how silly it was that I would then look in the mirror and deem myself fat. No matter how short, tall, slim, curvy these girls were they all looked both confident and beautiful.
However, I think it’s almost impossible to really judge an industry with no real insight. But, when it comes to models they occasionally will be falsely portrayed as being supporters of brands that have a very inclusive nature, even though it is often the brands who are choosing their models. With the models, just like any other industry, simply accepting the work they get given. Looking into this I wanted to know what my friend, Alex Farnworth, thought about the changes occurring. As a model of 5 years she started at 14, after being approached on the street by someone from her current agency. Over the years she has worked for several brands including, Urban Outfitters, Zara, River Island and Vans. Learning what it is like both on photoshoots and the catwalks. Therefore, asking her what she thought about the change in the modelling world intrigued me greatly.
“I think it's great that companies are beginning to edit their photos less. The whole size 6/8 model (US size 2/4) with airbrushed perfect skin is fake and it's sad that's what the industry wants most models to be. I think this can make girls feel unconfident when they are scrolling through these websites, so editing the photos less is for sure going to have a positive impact on people’s body confidence." ~Alex Farnworth
So, with both men and women alike supporting their fellow models will brands continue to push the boundaries on what the ‘norm’ is until the ‘norm’ is just whoever you want to be? I am unsure if we will be as lucky as to change the minds of all brands, but one thing is for sure...
Change is coming, and it is being welcomed by everyone, from catwalk models to a marketing intern who loves a good blog. No more being told we are too skinny, or too fat, or just need ‘a little tone’, because the only thing that matters is how we feel within ourselves and it’s time that brands stand behind companies like Willow Layne Lingerie and support this!