That was fast. Fashion teen brand Hollister quickly removed a photo of a model from its Facebook and Twitter pages on Friday after people complained that her legs were “too skinny” and “emaciated.”
"Leading a healthy and active lifestyle is a core part of our brand and company culture. We think these are qualities that appeal to our customer base," a company spokesman tells Yahoo Shine. "Because the photo may not have been consistent with this message, we have removed it."
On Twitter, the photo has gotten plenty of negative feedback:
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Hollister's parent company Abercrombie & Fitch has had a rocky year with its anti-plus-size messages. In May, CEO Mike Jeffries issued a pseudoapology when a 2006 Salon article surfaced in which he told a reporter of his brand’s audience, “In every school there are the cool and popular kids, and then there are the not-so-cool kids. Candidly, we go after the cool kids. We go after the attractive all-American kid with a great attitude and a lot of friends. A lot of people don’t belong [in our clothes], and they can’t belong. Are we exclusionary? Absolutely." Jeffries's brand was criticized for carrying only women's double zero and XS sizes, not XL or XXL.
And while it’s unclear whether the Hollister model’s legs are naturally thin or if they were airbrushed to epic proportions, there’s also been a recent backlash against companies going to ridiculous lengths to slim down models in both the adult and teen sections of fashion websites. Take Target, which, just last week, apologized for distorting a bikini model’s body in the teen section of its site. Her thighs had been slimmed considerably, one leg was cartoonishly skinny, and her arms were arms bizarrely elongated.
The images seem even more outdated at a time when fashion appears to be embracing diversity. From the rise of curvier cover girls such as Kate Upton and Jennie Runk to companies like Free People casting "real people" models instead of traditional ones, and the first-ever plus size line debuting this year at New York Fashion Week,brands are responding to the need for a more thoughtful definition of beauty.
Hear that, Hollister?
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