Fashion magazines, known for putting waifs, stick figures and svelte celebrities on its pages, have always celebrated “real women,” who often times do not remotely resemble said featured females, on their covers with headlines like “Love Your Body” or “Embrace Your Curves.” But one glossy is fully embracing a full-figured woman.
For its November issue, Elle Spain put model Tara Lynn on its cover with the headline “El Exito de una Mujer Real” which translates to “The Success of the Real Woman.” She’s also featured in an editorial spread inside the magazine shot by photographer Xavi Gordo.
However, not all fashion critics believe putting a plus-size model on its cover helps to combat the standards of size and beauty dictated by fashion, but rather reinforces the stereotype.
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“The fashion industry—and the media as a whole—should be working towards more inclusive depictions of a range of shapes, sizes, and skin colors in both editorials and advertisements. But the rhetoric that follows that inclusion, that self-congratulatory, faux body positive ‘real woman’ terminology and mindset ultimately proves to further solidify the dichotomy between women who look like ‘models’ and women who do not. Headlines like this, campaigns like this…only put up more barriers between women and serve to perpetuate the idea that there are only two ways to be a woman, both in the world of fashion and outside of it: You can be a thin model type or you can be a ‘real woman.’”
Lynn, a “plus-size” model, is most famous for her H&M’s 2012 swimsuit campaign, “Big Is Beautiful.” The Seattle-born model, whose measurements are 38-34-47, has also appeared on the cover of Elle France, in a photo that went viral showing the model naked sitting on a chair, and Vogue Italia.