The Downsides of Modeling

Being a size zero also has it detriments when it comes to health. Far too many models are suffering from anorexia and bulimia and while the fashion industry is trying to distance itself from this image and trying to support efforts to counteract the spread of eating disorders, the modeling lifestyle is simply far too susceptible to these disorders. Some models, however, are able to become successful through healthy means but far too many are willing to take the shortcut—the oft devastating shortcut. The model is, therefore, constantly challenged to be healthy, a challenge that too many succumb to. These kinds of stresses sometimes force the model to take up other jobs, such as waitressing or cleaning.

Moreover, this idea of beauty as being strictly limited to those who are skinny also sends the wrong kind of message to numerous teenagers all across the nation and this can only facilitate the spread of this misguided idea of health and beauty. People need to be reminded that beauty can be full-figured, that beauty can exist beyond sizes one and two, that beauty can be found even with larger waist lines, that true beauty is found in the vibrancy of a healthy body.

On the Issue of Stereotypes

As a model, one will also constantly face stereotypes. Many people have the idea that models are lacking in the intellectual front and will constantly downplay the capacity of models. You will have to work against the cultural grain and be able to show the world that you can be more that a face that smiles in front of the camera or a body that men adore.

Many models are actually working tirelessly to shatter these stereotypes and as a model it is important that you also take part in this important advocacy.

Post written by Hannah Armstrong, who also writes for the NYTimes and Credit Glory, a credit repair Tampa company.

A Note on Feminism

Lastly, models have even earned the ire of other women, especially of many feminists who believe that feminism—the ideology that men and women are equal; the movement that seeks to shatter the chauvinist monolith of masculinity—simply does not bode well with fashion. This is because fashion is all about imagery. Creating images to adore so that people can respond with positive desire. This eventually leads to the objectification of women.

Models are reduced to nothing more than objects to hang clothes on so that they can accentuate the features of the clothes. They are reduced to mere playthings that men can ogle. And it is seen to perpetuate the wrong mentality of beauty, as has already been said. This is why so many feminists simply find fashion repulsive. However, these ideas do not sit well with everyone. Others see fashion as a celebration of femininity, as a form of empowerment through which the female form can be adored and the female takes center stage. There are numerous ideas that have been flung back and forth and, at the end of the day, one can only believe in one deems to be closest to her ideologies.

In the End

All these simply show the maze that a fashion model has to navigate, from the physical dangers of eating disorders, to the psychological trauma of competition and even the symbolic oppression of stereotypes, the only conclusion is that being a fashion model is a truly challenging profession.

Following the Glitz and Glamor

If there is one thing that could be said about the current spawning of reality shows that are geared to giving young girls a quick ticket into the fashion industry, it is the fact that the obsession over fashion and the fashion industry has certainly not waned. Teenagers still desire to be a fashion model—that girl on the cover of Vogue, rubbing shoulders with the rich and powerful, being adored by the entire nation, wearing the coolest and trendiest clothes, with the sprawling billboards all over town.

To many, the world of fashion, its glitz and glamor, is one of fantasy. People can only dream about being part of the world of the rich and famous and this seeming mythicization is what drives so many to aspire to be part of it. This is why no matter what happens, there will always be a girl out there with her unbridled innocence dreaming to be the next Tyra Banks.

Woman Against Woman

The fashion industry, however, is a very cutthroat industry. There are only very few magazines out there. Only very few big-name modeling agencies. Only very few designers who need muses. This girls who want to be a model are placed in a slowly depleting savanna and they have to claw their way to success. Many models regret the decision of entering the fashion industry after they realize the psychological effects that it has on them.

Woman is pit against woman. You have to out-walk, out-pose, out-personality your competition so that you will be noticed. You can’t make too many friends and the very few that you make are usually short-lasting friendships, which are eventually cut short and curtailed by whatever competition you eventually have.

The fashion industry, therefore, becomes a lonely venture for a model. You have to rely on yourself and sometimes your family to be able to get through it all—and amidst all the hoopla success is never a certainty. You can only hope that you will be successful when all is said and done.