Friday 19 January 2018

‘Anorexic’ bikini model ad banned

Katie Hodge

A CLOTHING retailer has sparked outrage over an advertisement which featured a bikini-clad model who "looked anorexic".

The online campaign was deemed "irresponsible and offensive" for picturing the angular woman in swimwear and denim shorts.

The British Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has banned the Drop Dead Clothing advertisement in which the model's hip, rib and collar bones are clearly visible, along with hollows in her thighs.

Its ruling came in response to a formal complaint.

"A complainant objected that the ad was irresponsible and offensive because they believed the model was underweight and looked anorexic," the ASA said.

"We considered that in combination with the stretched out pose and heavy eye make-up, the model looked underweight in the pictures," it added.

"We noted that Drop Dead's target market was young people.

"We considered that using a noticeably skinny model with visible hip, rib, collar and thigh bones, who wore heavy make-up and was posed in ways that made her body appear thinner, was likely to impress upon that audience that the images were representative of the people who might wear Drop Dead's clothing, and as being something to aspire to.

"Therefore, while we considered the bikini and denim short images might not cause widespread or serious offence, we concluded they were socially irresponsible."

According to Drop Dead Clothing Ltd, the professional model was a standard size eight and was "representative of young people".

In response to the ASA, the company said make-up used in one of the images may have given her the appearance of dark sunken eyes and a stretched pose may have made her torso appear slimmer.

But it said she wore an unadjusted bikini in the advertisement, was "perfectly healthy" and not emaciated.

Insisting all of its models were "everyday people", it told the ASA it would be unreasonable to consider a size eight model offensive.

The watchdog said the advertisement, which was published online on June 28, must not appear again in its current form.

It has warned Drop Dead to ensure the images in their campaigns are responsibly prepared.

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