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The model we want to high five RIGHT NOW.

By NICKY CHAMP

“Modelling to me isn’t just about being good-looking or having a lot of fun and being really really good-looking” said Derek Zoolander.

And same goes for Crystal Renn.

The 26-year-old model is calling for sample sizes to be made bigger; speaking out at a panel, Inside the Modeling Industry: A Conversation About Health and Beauty in Fashion, as part of National Eating Disorders Awareness Week in New York.

Onya Crystal.

Renn believes that designers should change from the standard U.S. size zero or 2 (Australian size 4 or 6) to a U.S. size 8 (Australian size 12).

“By having a size 8 sample, you are giving freedom to a designer,” she said. “Most of the models are going to be size 6s and 8s, and you could have 10s, and if a really amazing model walked in who was a size 0, you would tailor the dress down to her.”

Renn has (unsurprisingly) struggled with eating disorders in the past after being told to lose 10 inches off her waist and to look to Vogue magazine for inspiration by the model scout who initially signed her. In her book, Hungry, she reveals the pressure to conform to the industry’s impossible standards led her weight to spiral down to a frightening 43 kilos.

Given the disturbing revelations from ex-Vogue Australia editor, Kirstie Clements, about fit models eating tissues and regularly fainting from hunger in order to fit the size zero mould, I’m wondering just who is the chicken and who is the egg in the fashion industry.

Or in other words: who is driving models to starve themselves? Is it the fashion designers or is the modelling industry?

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And just because we can, here are twelve gorgeous models above a size zero:

If the fashion designers are insisting that fit models be a size zero and the fashion magazines are abiding by that in order to shoot designer clothes and in turn the modelling agencies are pressuring models to be thin in order to get work, then why does Renn’s statement hint that designers want more ‘freedom’ to design clothes to fit a broader audience?

And if magazines are retouching models with jutting out collarbones to look bigger and healthier then how can this sickening cycle ever end?

In any case, it’s certainly cause for celebration when people with influence within the fashion industry speak out.

Also on the panel was Chris Gay, president of Marilyn Model Agency who said, “The industry standards are ridiculous. They’re not standards a woman can keep through her life or her career.” He said. “You’re replacing good models with new models because of unrealistic standards.”

Yes, Renn’s statement is an overly simplistic means to creating change and one that initially made me rejoice but was followed shortly by a well, duh. But I think we have gotten to a point where we can’t just shake our heads and think of the fashion industry as some kind of absurd place where Derek Zoolander castoffs rein.

To me, it feels like we’re on the precipice of change, and the more fashion industry insiders speak up about it the better.

Let us know what you think; size zero – should designers scrap it? What clothing size would you like to see as the ‘standard’?

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