Unachievable standards in the fashion industry

Whilst on a shopping trip with my Mum a few weeks ago I was both confused and slightly disgusted by the mannequins on display around the shop. From the front, they were like any other mannequins that you see in stores all over the world, modelling the perfectly fitted clothes on their skinny frames. However, it was when I saw the back of them that I discovered how the clothes were so well fitted; they were folded and pinned, pulling the fabric tight to fit properly. I started to notice, over the next few weeks, that this trick seemed to be common practice in many of the retail stores that I regularly visit. I didn’t get it. Why would a clothes shop, with all sizes at their disposal, dress a mannequin in clothes that were too big? My guess, because the mannequins are too small for any of the sizes that they stock, aka unrealistically and unhealthily small for their height. Not only is this false advertising, posing that the clothes fit much better than they actually do (unless these companies are expecting us to walk around with a few pins in the back of our dresses on a night out), but it’s setting standards for people that are unarguably unachievable. The size of mannequins in clothes shops has been an issue which I noticed years ago, and am shocked has not been fixed yet. With all of the progress in relation to body image and mental health, I am surprised that nobody seems to have updated shop mannequins to represent a real variety of sizes. Not only would it promote a healthier body image to people of all ages, helping to tackle problems such as eating disorders, but it would also save shop floor workers a bit of time when dressing the displays!

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