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Australian Government Announces Body Image Initiative

Australian Government to Media: Step Away From Photoshop

In a self-proclaimed first, the Australian government is backing a new series of initiatives to promote healthy body image. The initiatives — which take aim at Australia's youth population — include a voluntary code of conduct, which will earn fashion and media outlets a "body image friendly" stamp of approval if they choose to comply. Under the new code, models' hips wouldn't be erased away, celebs wouldn't be flawless, and a size two or higher would be the norm on a runway.

The new guidelines were developed by Australia's National Advisory Group on Body Image (NAGBI) as a way to address negative body image and the impact that it has. In national surveys, body image was a main concern amongst Australian youth, and only 20 percent of young women felt happy with their weight. Some of the recommendations the code calls for are a ban on advertising rapid weight-loss products, putting a stop to the use of ultra-skinny or overly-muscular models, refraining from digitally enhancing or altering images of people, and encouraging the use of a diverse group of models — in size, shape, and ethnicity.

Unfortunately, I'm a bit apprehensive as to how many fashion magazines and designers will adopt this code. Magazine editors have stated that Photoshopping is a wanted necessity, and a study has shown that larger models might do more harm than help. Personally, I'd love to see diversity become more of the norm in the fashion industry, and I could definitely go without rampant Photoshopping. I'm holding out hope that these initiatives are a step in the right direction — how about you?

bluesarahlou bluesarahlou 7 years
I don't have a problem with fixing flyaways or blemishes....but when you make her body so thin she looks like a bobblehead...that's going too far.
Soniabonya Soniabonya 7 years
Wow she has freckles and birthmarks on her arm like I do! I'm sick of the over photo shopping. To me it markets and unrealistic portrayal of beauty.
genesisrocks genesisrocks 7 years
She really does look beautiful unphotoshopped. The only improvement was making her hair a little thicker. The rest of it made her look worse IMO
amber512 amber512 7 years
She looks SO beautiful in the un-Photoshopped version, I don't know why they had to ruin her!
chloe-bella chloe-bella 7 years
I'm kind of suprised to see that some people think all photoshopping is bad. What's wrong with touching up pictures to eliminate blemishes and fly-away hairs? Having said that, I actually think the un-photoshopped picture of Faith looks way better. Her natural face is so pretty, and it's a shame they felt the need to turn it into what essentially looks like a wax figure. Her hair and skin color look much more vibrant in the original picture as well.
Pistil Pistil 7 years
What if we just invest our time into something else instead of burying our heads in these asinine magazines, photoshopped or not? Because I'm sure it's only the model who's been airbrushed to half her size that's doing all the harm, and not the articles on SKINNY PILLS and the 56 MILLION WAYS buying this magazine will improve my life.
eneriyma eneriyma 7 years
I'm all for no photo shopping (or air brushing, or any of that). I'm also for more variety in sizes - and what about size 6 or 8, instead of just 00 and the occasional 12? 12 isn't necessarily healthy, and neither is 00.
lilxmissxmolly lilxmissxmolly 7 years
I don't know how I feel about this- in particular the banning of skinny or "overly muscular" people. If they're trying to encourage a variety of body types, they shouldn't ban two types of body. Plenty of people are naturally thin or work very hard to be muscular - what about their body images?
Kellanawida Kellanawida 7 years
This has been big news over here, I really hope that it works!
inlove23 inlove23 7 years
I agree lilkimbo! I understand that it's okay to slightly perfect them (blemishes, bags under eyes, red eyes, hair problems, etc) but not take twenty pounds off their already slender figure! I know after I look at Victoria Secret's magazines it makes me wanna work out! haha. But they look naturally beautiful and curvy, not stick thin. I'm glad were making this change for the better. Hopefully it will help curb destructive behaviors in young women that feel like they aren't skinny enough for modeling.
Spectra Spectra 7 years
I think it's awesome to get rid of Photoshopping pictures, but I think the magazines should be doing it on their own; the government shouldn't have to intervene and force them to do it if they don't want to. I personally would be more likely to buy a magazine without photoshopped people on it than one with the Photoshopping done.
bryseana bryseana 7 years
Her arm is way skinnier. They're selling an illusion. Models are retouched / photoshopped too. It does give women who buy these magazines the wrong impression. But it's obviously not a new phenomenon. I wonder why it's such a debate now?
mix-tape mix-tape 7 years
I agree with the premise, but honestly, why is the government invading on the private industry? I hope the States never attempt this waste of time. I would be strongly offended by the productivity of our government, as if it isn't bad enough.
MeiGaku MeiGaku 7 years
i don't know how i feel about this. i guess it's okay to have the industry regulate itself, but as long as this type of perfection is going to sell, it's not going to stop. plus, this may sound mean, but celebs are supposed to be perfect--i don't care if they're "still human," it's their job. they're paid to look good. plus, i know that body image is an issue int he US, but really, obesity and overweight children is much more rampant than overly skinny kids. i'm an overweight woman (size 10/12) say what we may about the average woman being a size 12, but reality is, just because that's the majority doesn't make it healthy. then again, neither is a size 0. i guess what i'm trying to say is that it starts with parents making healthy choices for their children, who will then learn to make those healthy choices as they become adults. that's the only way to fix this epidemic imo.
RunnerLeash1 RunnerLeash1 7 years
Faith looks sooo much better in the real one!.... and go Australia!
lilkimbo lilkimbo 7 years
Eek. That photoshopped arm is scary! I do see the point in slight photoshopping. Like, I wouldn't mind if they had retouched the circles under her eyes a little. But yeah, this extreme photoshopping has to stop.
totygoliguez totygoliguez 7 years
I don't know. I remember when Spain banned skinny models, but I haven't seen the difference in Spanish runways, models are still highly skinny.
brindey brindey 7 years
I think there is a balance. Magazines cover designing is an art- just like make-up and hair and lighting and whatnot. Would I like the pictures to be real- yes. But I want them to be pretty, too. Go figure. I think healthy role models and glossies of successful women are good- not bad. (Healthy being the key word there, though.) On the flip side of the issue, a third of the teens in this country are obese. Do magazines have any affect on that? Should they? Which is better for them?
Venus1 Venus1 7 years
Let's raise a glass to Australia (now with a long overdue woman PM too!). Together we can all change the way people think!
spacecadeteer spacecadeteer 7 years
I'm optimistic and agree that it's at least a step in the right direction of addressing the problem. US Sugars, there's an act being considered by the House Energy and Commerce Committee called the Healthy Media for Youth Act (HR 4925), which is supported by the Girl Scouts. I wrote to my congressman asking him for his support once there is a way for him to do so; I'd look into it if this interests you at all.
skigurl skigurl 7 years
not only did they make her look like a boney size 00 18 year old model when she's really a mother of 3 in her 40s, but they made her face look pretty much unrecognizable
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