This week has been all about bodies – edited and unedited, skinny and not skinny. Where to begin? First there was Myla Dalbesio shot for the Calvin Klein campaign. The 5’11” model wears a UK size 14 and was described by Elle magazine as a plus size model. Cue fury from the public. It’s unfair to blame Elle as Dalbesio herself talks about herself as a bigger model in the interview. Indeed, she is bigger than the standard model size. She brings out the positive too: “True body diversity doesn't mean only sizes 0's and 2's then jumping to size 16 and up. There is a middle ground.”
Myla Dalbesio for Calvin Klein. The problem with this categorisation is that it reaffirms the idea of a standard unachievable to most. The average woman in the UK is about half a foot shorter than Dalbesio and wears a size bigger clothing. UK might not lead the world as the healthiest fittest nation, but it’s comical nonetheless. Is Dalbesio really plus size or is that an industry confused about its clientele? Diversity is the key. It’s not all skinny or fat – there’s ways of combining different body types. Here is where Vogue US steps in, kind of. Their newest lingerie shoot doesn’t include the thinnest of models but regardless it shows a range of different bodies. “Give me a D! Give me an F!” it calls out, exclaiming gorgeous bras come in all shapes and sizes. What fills them certainly does, but honestly – finding a gorgeous bra in an F cup is more of a miracle than coming across a plus sized model on a Parisian catwalk. Vogue paves the way the industry works, and spotting curvier models on its glossy pages is a sign of changing times.
Then there’s the whole Photoshop saga. Keira Knightly did a semi nude shoot for Interview Magazine
; her refusal to have her body altered started a conversation no doubt. Think about it – Knightly pretty much is that perfect size 0, and yet even she normally receives an extensive retouching session. How messed up is that? But, even with her slightly different sized breasts she looks almost ethereal. Model Lara Stone had a shoot for System Magazine
that more people can perhaps relate to.
The 30-year-old model gave birth a year ago and as women do, she’s struggled with the changes during and after her pregnancy. “You have to sit there and really think about it: 'Oh, I grew this little person's fingernails in my tummy.' After that, do you really give a s*** about arm flab? Because I don't,” she said, and stripped down in front of Juergen Teller’s lens. The results are astonishing - unlike every other 'unedited' image, this shows every wrinkle, stretch mark or other imperfection you could think of. Yet she looks absolutely stunning - something that is much easier to achieve than a size 0 frame.
Kim Kardashian deserves a honourable mention too. Her shoot for Paper Mag
was special to say the least. Her obviously enhanced butt does nothing to break down any body image issues but we couldn’t help but warm up to her a bit – mainly because of a tweet she posted. She’s still famous for being famous but at least she has a sense of humour…or had the sense to hire a publicist with one. Anyway. If you missed the video that made her famous, you’re now bound to know she flaunts a Brazilian.
It's been a good week so stepping into Friday night feels doubly good. We'll finish the week with a little chuckle:
All images are owned by the publications credited. Cover photo is courtesy of Vogue.