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As a child, I remember flipping through magazines and seeing adverts for fair-skinned, tall, and thin girls and women. Being a guy, I never saw girls like those models around me. My sister and friends had all different bodies, shapes and sizes, and none would look like those cover girls. Even men in fashion adverts would look godly perfect. Their chiselled face, washboard abs, and glistening hair was nothing like the guys I had around me.
Their arms and legs would be airbrushed smooth with an even tan, and I'd be wondering, perplexed as to why their bodies looked so godly perfect. Only a few years later, I realised how deceitful the modelling and fashion industries can be.
Well… I made my peace with it.
You’d be surprised to know that the plus-size fashion industry in the United States was valued at 21 billion dollars in 2018, accounting for slightly over 20% of the women's wear market. This upbeat projection seemed to augur a surprisingly inclusive turn for an industry that had previously relied on exclusivity.
Thanks to the body positivity movement all over the world, now clothes aren’t designed for stick figures and a set body type.
It’s no surprise as we live in a world that is presumptuous. As per the fashion industry, what is worn should instil confidence in a person. To embrace body acceptance, the fashion industry may be inclusive and inspiring, but that was all a facade as people have found themselves dealing with numerous health problems trying to fit themselves into model-sized body moulds.
One method to accomplish body positivity is to have a variety of people demonstrate items. Consumers will be able to view a wider range of models, making it more realistic to the actual world. Thankfully, now we’re actually seeing this happen.
Body positivity champions the belief that everyone deserves a good body image, regardless of how society and pop culture define ideal shape, size, or appearance.
Body positivity raises its voice for the following aspects:
It is about more than just questioning how society views people based on their physical size and shape. It also acknowledges that race, gender, sexuality, and disability are frequently used to make judgments about someone’s body.
Body positivity tries to enlighten people on how fashion, pop culture, and media tries to brainwash people's attitudes toward their bodies, including how they feel about food, exercise, clothing, health, identity, and self-care. Thankfully, now people have become more aware about body image and creating a healthier and more realistic relationship with their bodies by better comprehending the impact of such forces.
How Are Fashion And Body Positivity Related To Each Other?
You would be surprised to know that origins of body positivity may be traced all the way back to the Victorian Dress Reform movement. Women pushed for the acceptance of women's bodies in this movement, and were discouraged from utilising excessive corsets or bodily mutilation to suit the standard of an exceedingly small waist and or hourglass form. Kudos to these women who refused to hide their bodies beneath layers of cloth in overly ornate dresses. It is also known that during this reform, women also fought for the freedom to wear pants.
Dress forms being constructed in idealised feminine form in a British garment company (1912) below:
The fashion industry has recently placed a strong emphasis on body positivity, particularly among plus-size individuals. As a result, we have seen the introduction of a slew of new plus-size lines across the globe. Several major brands, including Forever 21, Calvin Klein, and even Victoria's Secret, have joined the effort to accommodate larger sizes for its customers. The movement is gaining a lot of traction, and it has a sizable following.
It's incredible to see how far body positivity has progressed in the fashion industry. Hopefully, there will be no need for a "plus-size" label in the near future, and items will simply be classified based on their real measurements. While we are still a long way from achieving perfect equilibrium, let’s just hope that the day of embracing complete fashion inclusivity isn’t far off.
The fashion business has progressed significantly and has become more diverse. Several celebrities, including Demi Lovato, Lizzo, Selena Gomez, and Serena Wilson, are role models for body positivity. The future of fashion is to reduce normative beauty standards and highlight varied people in the fashion business to foster self-love and confidence.
Here are some body positivity icons you can look up to for some inspiration.
There are brands that have been chastised for using body positivity as a performative marketing technique. However, the fact that people of all sizes can see themselves represented in media by their favourite fashion brands is a big win. Nonetheless, some businesses have made a concerted effort to spread the actual message of body acceptance to their customers.
These brands take body positivity to a new level by designing clothing that is both sustainable and inclusive for individuals of all sizes.
Asos, Modcloth, Swimsuits For All, Everlane, American Eagle are some international brands that are championing body positivity.
Body Positive Fashion Brands In India
This is the best time for shopping. Literally all we have to do is open our browser and access a vast variety of stores that are catering to our needs right on our fingertips. There are Indian brands that have sizes available from XXL to 6XL. So dear women of all shapes and sizes, it’s time to sway in style because there are some companies that will leave you spoiled for choice. Look no further!
A lifetime of disliking one's body is not the most productive use of one's time. Get it right?
Your distinctive personality, your opinions, attitudes, thinking, habits, expressions and body language, manners, and your body… all these things make up who you are. Accept yourself as you are, whether you are tall, short, voluptuous, or slim, and go on from there. Once you start accepting and loving yourself for who you are, opinions and standards won’t matter to you anymore.
On a great note, it's wonderful to see how fashion is allowing women and men to embrace their own skin.
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