An Yves Saint Laurent ad in Elle UK magazine has been banned for featuring a model who is “unhealthily underweight.”
The ASA considered that the model’s pose and the particular lighting effect in the ad drew particular focus to the model’s chest, where her rib cage was visible and appeared prominent, and to her legs, where her thighs and knees appeared a similar width, and which looked very thin, particularly in light of her positioning and the contrast between the narrowness of her legs and her platform shoes. We therefore considered that the model appeared unhealthily underweight in the image and concluded that the ad was irresponsible.
The ad breached CAP Code (Edition 12) rule 1.3 (Responsible advertising).
Now the YSL ad has been pulled and the ASA informed the fashion house not to repeat this type of imagery.
Others companies who’ve been reprimanded for featuring under-weight models include a clothing brand called Drop Dead and Urban Outfitters, the latter for showing the bottom half of a woman’s legs with a “significant gap between the model’s thighs, and that her thighs and knees were a similar width.”
Jo Swinson, the leader of a group called Campaign for Body Confidence, said “It’s better for girls to channel the spirit of [Sport England campaign] ‘This Girl Can’ to focus on their body feeling great through exercise, than feeling pressure to have a thigh gap.”
YSL and Elle magazine had no comment, though France moved to ban depicting and selecting “unhealthily thin” models earlier this year. England has joined the movement.
Contact the author at Hillary@jezebel.com.
Image via ASA Twitter.