Body positivity in fashion

SHARE   |   Tuesday, 13 March 2018   |   By Rorisang Ndlovu
Body positivity in fashion

The fashion standard of the 'perfect' model has been formed, shaped and evolved into many things throughout the decades, but the only trait that has been a constant has been the size of the model. Majority of magazine pages and covers consist of very tall and very skinny Caucasian women. They are there to project the traditional global beauty as they are adorned with the most beautiful jewellery and in the most expensive clothing on and off the runway. The use of these skinny body types has caused a lot of issues and has risen the voices of woman that are not the standard 'perfect' body type as the average woman is not a size 0 with a height of 1.82cm. Placing such images in the media are harmful to the images that show women that are of bigger sizes and shorter heights as they much less glamorized and celebrated. An image is an image, who becomes hurt is the woman in it.

Women all over the world have been protesting, fighting and constantly finding a way to uplift and broaden the view of the 'perfect' body through various campaigns and platforms. Women today feel responsible for how they portray their own bodies. This has put pressure on major designers (and inspired some) to incorporate diverse bodies on the runway. Ashley Graham is a plus size American model and a body activist. She is the first size 16 model to ever land the cover of sports illustrated swimsuit issue and plans to keep advocating for change on the behalf of all the women who believe in size diversity and expect the fashion business to cooperate. Body diversity is the main goal. Where we can all look at an image of a woman of any body size, height, shape and accept it the way it is. This is why it is important to use all major platforms to introduce, embrace and celebrate the beauty of a woman. In Botswana we traditionally see a full figured woman as beautiful, but there is a large number of women in our society that feel that skinny is the only beautiful body. There are certain platforms like Miss Plus Size Botswana which is aimed to inspire and appreciate curvaceous women. Today we can say that there is a bigger awareness in change the way women see their bodies and how it is portrayed through fashion and media. With the evolution of technology and the help of time this awareness will grow including the platforms and eventually we will have equal amount of images of ALL body types for the public to consume positively.

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