Saint Laurent, Givenchy and more are banning sizes below the French 34
Kate Moss once notoriously said, “Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels” — an extreme take on an industry that, even though they might not admit it, has held to that ethos. Today, with the body positivity movement and overall healthier attitudes toward body image, the fashion world is finally catching on.
LVMH and Kering, the parent companies of Gucci, Christian Dior, Louis Vuitton, and other labels, have banned the hiring of ultra-thin (and underage) models. The companies will no longer use models below size 0 — equivalent to a French 32 — nor will they use models younger than 16.
Models are still mostly very young and very thin, but the increasingly pervasive feeling is that the tide might be changing.
Stella McCartney spoke out on Monday in agreement of the ban after showing her collection at Paris’ baroque Opera Garnier. “It’s important that this industry takes responsibility,” she said. “The houses must, the designers must, the casting directors must, the agents must, the models must.”
Even though the ban might have good intentions, some people feel like it’s not quite the right step to take. Last month, Elizabeth Yuko wrote for Stylecaster, “For a lot of us, our weight is simply another aspect of our lives over which we have little or no control, and by placing an outright ban on models of a certain size is reinforcing the already unattainable body standards placed on women.”
Designers such as Karl Lagerfeld and Dior designer Maria Grazia Chiuri have also spoken out against the ban. For now, however, the ban is one way to change the mind of an industry fairly set in its ways.
“We hope to inspire the entire industry to follow suit, thus making a real difference in the working conditions of fashion models industry-wide,” Kering CEO François-Henri Pinault said in a statement.