By The Numbers: Diversity During the Fall/Winter 2018 Fashion Shows

Anok Yai opens the Fall/Winter 2018 Prada show at New York Fashion Week (The Independent UK)

Anok Yai opens the Fall/Winter 2018 Prada show at Milan Fashion Week (The Independent UK)

Diversity in the fashion industry has been a hot-button topic for some time. Diversity in fashion shows has been a large part of that discussion. Fortunately, “The Fashion Spot” tracks this and keeps the industry accountable. The site puts the findings in a report and releases them to the public.

Here’s what “The Fashion Spot” found for diversity on the runway for the Fall/Winter 2018 fashion shows:

  • New York had the most racially-diverse models, ahead of London, Paris and Milan Fashion Weeks.
  • Nonwhite models comprised 37%+ of models for New York Fashion Week. This was just a .4% increase from last year.
  • 7 designers had fashion shows that were 62%+ diverse.
  • 33 transgender women and non-binary models walked in shows this year.
  • Plus-size models comprised 1%+ of all models.
  • There were 9 models aged 50+. This is down from 10 the year before.

 

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Trends: Celebrities Pregnant with Twins

Steven Yeun Instagram post (Steven Yeun)

Steven Yeun Instagram post (Steven Yeun)

Single births are so 2016. This year, it’s all about the multiples. (Births, duh.)

Seriously, this year has started off with a bang regarding celebrity birth announcements. First up, superstar/icon/QUEEN Beyonce announced that she’s pregnant with twins in an Instagram post that dropped February 1st. Naturally, the world went crazy (and that Instagram post is now the most-liked post ever). Beyonce also released photos from her pregnancy photoshoot, and later performed at the Grammys in a tribute to motherhood. As you do.

Not even two weeks later, it was confirmed that Amal Clooney (you know, George’s wife) is expecting twins. And the twins will be a boy and a girl.

There’s another couple that might be expecting twins. It’s confirmed that “The Walking Dead” actor Steven Yeun and his wife Joana Pak are expecting a child. One of Yeun’s recent Instagram posts was a series of photos of he and his pregnant wife, of which one photo features him holding up two fingers. The photo’s caption is two bee emoji.

So either they’ll also be welcoming twins this year, or Yeun is part of the Beyhive. I don’t know. We’ll find out.

It’s crazy that all these celebrities are having twins right now. No idea if any of them are through IVF and don’t want to speculate, but it’s interesting how all the pregnancies are syncing up.

 

Trends: #NoPhotoshop

Iskra-Lawrence 'Share Your Spark' AerieReal campaign (Glamour)

Iskra-Lawrence ‘Share Your Spark’ AerieReal campaign (Glamour)

It used to be that brands only used tall, skinny, (mostly) blonde girl in their advertising. This was thought to be aspirational: You wanted to be the girl in the photo, and how best to be that? Buy their clothes (or perfume, or lingerie, or whatever the brand was selling). But the pursuit of one aspirational body type led those who didn’t possess said body type (either by genetic luck-of-the-draw or by carefully-chosen enhancements) to believe themselves unworthy and maybe inferior.

Thankfully, that trend is on its way out. The current thing (which, I hope, stays) is all about positivity and accepting yourself as you are, because you are enough. For women’s brands, this has translated to, among other things, banning Photoshop.

This month, Glamour released its all-women, no Photoshop issue. The magazine’s staff has gone all-in on banning photo retouching: A quick glance at the “Girls” cast on the cover, and you can see that the cellulite on Lena Dunham’s thigh hasn’t been wiped out. And why should it? It’s just a natural part of life.

In January 2014, American Eagle’s underwear brand Aerie launched its #AerieReal campaign, featuring models of all shapes and sizes and no Photoshopping. The intimates brand is aimed at girls ages 15-22, and the campaign has been used to promote body acceptance, positivity and confidence.

Aerie’s gamble has paid off exponentially: Q2 2014 sales were up 9% from the previous quarter, and continued to grow for the rest of the year. In 2015, sales were up by 20%, with Q4 2015 seeing a 26% increase year-over-year. And sales in Q1 2016 were up 32%.

Body acceptance and positivity has also bled into regular women’s lives, and features prominently on social media. Searching #nophotoshop on Instagram brings up 460K+ posts.It’s clear that this trend isn’t going away anytime soon.

 

 

#ThrowbackThursday: #AerieReal, 2014

#AerieReal campaign, 2014 (The Huffington Post)

#AerieReal campaign, 2014 (The Huffington Post)

American Eagle’s underwear brand Aerie launched its Aerie Real campaign in January 2014. The campaign, photographed by John Urbano and targeted to teens and women and in their 20s, did away with traditional models (read: skinny, unblemished) and began using “real” women, unretouched in all their glory.

 

“Glamour” Publishes All-Women, No-Photoshop Issue

'Glamour 'magazine, February 2017 (Refinery29)

‘Glamour ‘magazine, February 2017 (Refinery29)

Fashion magazines are becoming woke as never before: “Glamour” magazine’s February 2017 will be feature no Photoshopping within its pages. If you’ve every picked up a women’s fashion magazine in the history of ever, you know this is no small feat.

Another thing: the issue will feature all women. Editor-in-Chief Cindi Leive breaks down what exactly this means:

We’ve decided to support women in the most meaningful way we can: by hiring them.From first page to our last every photo we commissioned for the February issue was created by women: photographers, stylists, hair, makeup, everything.

Clearly, “Glamour” puts its money where its mouth is. In her letter for readers, Leive declares that this issue’s changes were born of changing the norm. Even for a women’s magazine, women contributors were few and far between. For last fall’s content, Leive notes that only 37% of the print photographers who were used were women, and only 32% of the hairstylists were women.

Ashley Graham is First Plus-Size Model to Cover British “Vogue”

Ashley Graham's January 2017 Vogue U.K. cover (Vogue UK)

Ashley Graham’s January 2017 Vogue U.K. cover (Vogue UK)

Model Ashley Graham is busting boundaries left and right. Earlier this year, she covered Maxim and the coveted Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue. Now, she’s landed the cover of the fashion bible of the U.K., the British version of Vogue. Shot by famed photographer Patrick Demarchelier, Graham’s cover will be for the January 2017 issue.

Graham is a plus-size model, so her covering these storied publications shows that the fashion industry is coming around to including a wider variety of body types. Let’s hope American Vogue sees this, and follows suit.

Graham’s cover for British Vogue arrives on newsstands today.

Dell Williams, Influential Sex Shop Entrepreneur, Has Died

Sex shop founder/entrepreneur Dell Williams (Refinery29)

Sex shop founder/entrepreneur Dell Williams (Refinery29)

Sad news from last week: Dell Williams, founder of the first woman-friendly sex shop Eve’s Garden, died at the age of 92.

Her origin story begins in the early ’70s, when she decided to purchase a Hitachi Magic Wand, “the Rolls-Royce of vibrators” after attending famed sex educator Betty Dodson’s “Body/Sex Workshop.” (Dodson was a huge proponent of the Magic Wand.) When Williams attempted to buy the device at a New York City Macy’s, she was shamed by a younger male sales associate.

She reported her lightbulb moment as follows:

Someone really ought to open up a store where a woman can buy one of these things without some kid asking her what she’s going to do with it.

This experience led Williams to build Eve’s Garden from her kitchen table, pursuing it as a side-hustle while working a 9-to-5 as an advertising executive. She was working on this at an interesting time: Discussions about female sexuality were beginning to bubble up, contrasting with the point that sex shops were run by, and catered pretty exclusively to men.

She showed an aptitude for entrepreneurship, as the thriving mail-order business (founded in 1974) grew into a storefront, and later went online. The site sells condoms, sex toys, and books, including Williams’ biography “Revolution in the Garden.”

Williams quickly became one of the go-to women to comment on sexuality changes amidst the larger society. In 1973, she organized a conference on women’s sexuality that received a lot of attention, and was consulted on sexual matters ranging from how to up the passion during Valentine’s Day to Britney Spears’ own ode to female masturbation “Touch of My Hand.”

But perhaps Williams was destined to go into the sex industry: Legend has it she was named for journalist Floyd Dell, who was an ardent supporter for Margaret Sanger’s work.

Williams started something that (thankfully) continues to thrive to this day: the woman-friendly sex shop, where women can go in and explore without fear of being shamed or side-eyed.

Above all, she knew the power of a sexually healthy and knowledgable woman (and how scared the rest of the world is of her). For her dedication in her biography, she wrote:

It has long been my unassailable belief that orgasmic women can change the world.  By this I mean that a woman who is unfettered sexually is unfettered politically, socially, economically and she is unstoppable.