Project Runway Judge On The Hunt For Healthier Models

Nina Garcia

Here’s something worth talking about! Project Runway judge and Marie Claire creative director Nina Garcia has written an article on The Huffington Post complaining about the lack of healthy models in fashion. Whoa Nina! Slow your roll, you don’t want to go pissing off too many people in the industry now do you? Or perhaps you do? And if so, then we are about to profess our undying affection for you for speaking out from your highly placed position.

Why is it so hard to create change? Because people aren’t willing. Because people think the other person, or the next generation will do it. Because people don’t even think of change being a possibility. Because people are happy to just live with the status quo and complain about it.

“Fashion Week often seems to be a study in irony. How is it that the garments representing what American women will wear next season come down the runway on underweight models whose bodies are so far from those we see in reality?” the huffpost starts off by saying. Yes! Amen! Couldn’t agree more! Go on…

“I’ve seen many locations where the girls are very, very thin,” Nina told HuffPost Style. “It’s interesting because we live in a country where the obesity is so enormous. And then the reflection on the runways is girls that are so thin. So there’s two extremes that are almost like a reflection of themselves, and it’s very hard to be in the middle with girls that are just healthy.”

“We are all about the real woman,” says Nina about Marie Claire. “We don’t really shoot girls that are incredibly thin or incredibly young. Sometimes we shoot women that are not even models.”

This are two important things that go hand in hand: being too thing and too young. And we are thankful that the new underage model law that just came into effect in New York state this year, lobbied by The Model Alliance, is hopefully going to dissuade more and more magazines, labels & campaigns from portraying unhealthy images.

“The industry has changed tremendously and there is more change to come,” Nina continues. “We are so much more involved and so much more knowledgeable.”

We have access to information, and that can empower us to cause change. We can as a collective voice protest against labels like Abercrombie & Fitch who stupidly say they only market to the “cool kids” then watch as they sales figures quickly decline.

Nina spoke about a new generation of Magazine editors who are changing the focus of their publications to reflect the voices of their readership. We’ve seen this recently with the addition of Joanna Coles as Editor in Chief of Cosmo, who vows to include more political content in their pages. We women are more diverse than the fashion industry gives us credit for and it’s about time they start listening to us.

Thank you Nina for speaking up about an important issue, and not being afraid to piss a few people off by using your position of influence.

And designers who plan on attempting to impress the Project Runway judge, take her advice and use healthier models in your shows and the rest of your careers to create change. Taking small steps to make a difference can have a powerful effect in the long run, if you are only willing.




  1. Yea! Finally peoples brains are clicking in. How refreshing. Change is slow, but at least it is change that is needed.

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