LIFESTYLE

Too Thin? Petition Against Yves Saint Laurent's 'Malnourished' Models Gains 45,000 Signatures

10/04/2014 09:19 BST | Updated 10/04/2014 10:59 BST

For all the progress we are making with diversification of body images, there are still fashion shoots featuring impossibly thin models promoting a look that is beyond the reach of most normal women.

Yet while the fashion world may hide behind the words 'it's art' when taken to task about something a bit tasteless or reprehensible, one blogger's petition is gathering signatures rapidly.

Shannon Bradley-Colleary who writes about body issues and is also a HuffPost blogger, has started an e-petition to ask Yves Saint Laurent to stop using "seemingly malnourished" models after seeing pictures of a campaign in the March issue of Vanity Fair.

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The petition so far has attracted over 45,000 signatures.

On her blog, she writes: “"My first reaction was, what the hell? My second reaction was worry for this lovely young woman, because, TO ME, she looks malnourished and as the mother of two daughters I want to nourish her.

"I think we’ve all become accustomed to seeing women whose bodies are simply animate hangers for clothing. But even with my high tolerance for ultra-thin models this one struck me as particularly cruel.”

Rivkie Baum, editor of SLiNK magazine and co-founder of a plus size modelling competition with Models1 said: "As someone who works both straight and plus models, I am often keen to point out that the number of straight size models I see or meet while they are very slender they do look healthy and naturally that size.

"I do find the model here appears to be extremely thin and the look is quite unnatural and alarming. This could still be down to photoshop and I think we have to be careful to separate our feeling towards her and towards the brand that chooses to use models as slender as this or digitally alter models bodies. However this image is alarming and it is right and proper to call Saint Laurent out on this choice. Models need as much protection as young girls do from having pressure put on them to be smaller than they naturally can be. But I'd be curious to see the unretouched image first."

Since launching the petition, Shannon has received some comments around her petition questioning whether she is criticising the model, but she's keen to point out this isn't the case.

She, by her own admission has body dysmorphic issues (which is what her blog is about) and writes: "I don’t have proof this model is anorexic, but Walden Behavioral Care cites “muscle loss and weakness” as one of their anorexia facts.

"I see no musculature in this model at all and I particularly dislike her weak, lifeless posture. But, I must admit I had an emotional, visceral (not factual) reaction when I saw this photo."

About the petition which is addressed to CEO Francesca Bellettini, Shannon adds:

"I don't want one more woman or girl to be damaged by the message this image sends. Which seems to be that frailty and uber-thinness is the Beauty Standard. I particularly don't want my daughters to succumb to this expectation."

To sign the petition, click here.