Why India's fashion industry doesn't consider 'plus-size women' models

You all should love your body as the Internet is asking you to. But do not expect remuneration for the same.

 |  4-minute read |   27-09-2018
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Plus-size people can never find their choice of clothes. We all knew that.

What we didn’t know is that plus size models don’t get paid for walking the ramp. Because, what exactly have they done to maintain their plus-size figure, right?

Welcome to body positivity, India chapter.

Amid much applause, the Lakme Fashion Week had started ramp walks by plus-size models in 2016. But it recently came to light that those models showcasing plus-sized clothes (as every designer and brand is now talking about inclusivity) did not get paid, like other “models”.

lakme-inside_092718044817.jpgJust an ‘instrument’ to enlarge the reach of brands and designers? (Photo of model Neha Parulkar: Courtesy Instagram)

Model Neha Parulkar, who spreads the message of body positivity on Instagram, recently said in an interview that in the beginning, she agreed to this “charity” arrangement, because obviously, it was Lakme Fashion Week; a great platform.

“But three years down the line, I think it’s just unfair,” Parulkar said. According to the report, many are not even paid anything for their conveyance.

So, the brouhaha over body positivity and plus size boils down to a few points: 

  1. You all should love your body as the Internet is asking you to. But do not expect remuneration for the same.
  2. Plus-size models are not actual models. They are ‘instruments’ to enlarge the reach of brands and designers. Never mind the dearth of creative variety.
  3. You are walking the ramp with your not so ‘model’ figure. That’s a favour you must be grateful for.

A model is one who is either genetically blessed with a body type that perfectly fits with the laid-down beauty standards, or someone who toils towards it, with visible results showing.

Now, the advent of plus-size clothing conformed to the rising number of people with different shapes wanting to look equally fashionable. Every brand and designer making room for “fat” people contributed to the body positivity movement, namely that one should not feel dejected for not being able to fit into some size.

All was very well and spoke so progressively of the fashion industry — until the chinks started showing.

In its defence, the industry can say that plus-size models are yet to become part of the mainstream, and as the industry is full of various discriminations, including that of pay, it will take time for things to look up.

Well, so here's our solution.

Till the time things look up and the fashion industry actually treats plus-size models with equal respect, the brands and designers should take the help of make-up artists (pay them though) to make their paid, 'regular' models look oversize to showcase their plus-size clothes.

The plus-size models can indulge in some street-shopping and post their photos on their social media accounts. In any case, nobody is paying them either.

Also read: Choli ke peeche kya hai? Sabyasachi Mukherjee’s booby trap sexism


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