The last time Sweden-based fashion retailers H&M made headlines for body image, it was for using computer-generated model bodies attached to real heads in an attempt to sell swimwear this summer. This time, however, the buzz surrounding H&M isn’t about fake models being too thin; it’s about mannequins that are bigger:
Though not plus-sized by any means, the new mannequins feature thighs that are fuller, stomachs that are rounder, and over-all silhouettes that are simply larger than the traditional models. And they’re wearing lingerie! Scandalous.
Online reaction to the larger-sized mannequins has been somewhat mixed. The majority of commenters applaud the retailer’s use of a more realistic and relatable model to sell their wares. Some, on the other hand, claim that the mannequins promote obesity and unhealthy lifestyles. What these commenters fail to recognize, however, is that the larger mannequins haven’t at all replaced the “thin” ones we’re used to–both styles appear side by side within the same department. If anything, it seems that H&M is actually making an effort to represent a broader range of women’s body types with these new mannequins!…Or at least attempting to market their clothing to a wider variety of customers.
Whatever the reason, I’m all for variety. After all, fashion isn’t one-size-fits-all. Why should our mannequins be?
Liza, Editorial Director