Rosie Nelson and Jada Selzer, two models who work in the UK, have joined the country’s Women’s Equality Party (WEP) to combat unattainable beauty standards perpetuated by the fashion industry.
In the advent of London Fashion Week, which starts September 16, the WEP has launched a campaign that strives to promote healthier and more diverse bodies, The Guardian reports. Operating under the hashtag #NoSizeFitsAll, the campaign has called for legislation that will require all models hired by agencies to have a minimum body mass index of 18.5, or a doctor’s note affirming their good health. The campaign has also proposed that Fashion Week designers showcase at least one sample size larger than a UK 12 (US 8), and that UK fashion magazines feature plus-sized models in at least one editorial per issue.
Both Nelson and Selzer have signed on to the initiative because they have experienced the toxic effects of the industry’s preoccupation with unreasonable thinness. Nelson, who moved from Australia to Britain to pursue a modelling career, told The Guardian that her agency continuously pressured her to shrink her measurements. “They said, just lose more weight — get down to the bone,” she said. “They pressed on my hips and I just sat there thinking, no, I can’t. I can’t physically lose more weight. I was in shock. I didn’t know what to say.” Now, Nelson works for smaller agencies, which have encouraged her to maintain a healthy weight.
For her part, Selzer decided to quit a series of modeling gigs in New York because they forced her to work exclusively with plus-sized brands. “I have potentially ruined my career by not being a slave to the industry,” she said. “But I chose my own health and happiness over my career, which is the best decision I could have made.”
In their crusade to reform the fashion industry, Selzer and Nelson have teamed up with WEP leader Sophie Walker, who is spearheading the #NoSizeFitsAll campaign. Walker told The Guardian that she hopes their efforts will offer an alternative to the “tiny, tiny little clothes” idolized by designers. “The previous work that’s been done to contest this has been a very gentle,” she said. “[W]e’re at the point where we’ve got to say, enough: this has got to stop.”
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Read the full story at The Guardian.