05/01/2015 12:15 GMT | Updated 05/01/2015 12:59 GMT

Urban Outfitters Banned From Using 'Irresponsible' Thigh Gap Image On Website

With a depression t-shirt and a blood-stained 'Kent State shooting' hoodie as previous mistakes, you'd think Urban Outfitters would learn to steer clear of controversy.

But the clothes store has now been ordered to remove an image from its website by the UK’s Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) that shows a model with a noticeable "thigh gap."

The ASA received a complaint that a model on the site appeared to be "unhealthily thin". The accuser said the site was promoting "irresponsible and harmful" media.

According to the MailOnline the image in question was one advertising red polkadot briefs.

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The ASA stated: "The ASA considered that the model was very thin, and noted, in particular, that there was a significant gap between the model's thighs, and that her thighs and knees were a similar width.

"We considered that the model looked underweight in the picture."

The ASA went on to say that the image could negatively influence Urban Outfitters' young audience by suggesting that being underweight is something to aspire to and concluded that the picture was "irresponsible."


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Urban Outfitters do not accept that the image is irresponsible. A spokesperson told the ASA the model has a "naturally tall and slim physique."

Nevertheless the ASA banned the clothing website from displaying the image "in its current form."

A similar image, where the model's knees have been cropped out of the shot, now appears on the site in its place.

Although technically following instructions, we're wondering if Urban Outfitters could have done more to promote healthy body image and support diversity.

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Minister for Women and Equalities Jo Swinson has said she supports the ASA's ruling.

"Given the worrying rates of eating disorders especially among young people, I applaud the Advertising Standards Authority for encouraging positive body image, and for taking steps to ensure that retailers comply with this," she said in a statement.

"I hope that other retailers take note of these unacceptable images."

Hear, hear.

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