Missguided was roundly praised when it stopped airbrushing its models' stretch marks and released a totally unretouched campaign last year – and now there is another reason to cheer on the brand: its body-positive mannequins.
The high street fashion retailer has introduced a diverse array of mannequins representing a range of ethnic backgrounds and featuring natural body features, including stretch marks and vitiligo, Campaign reports.
The figures were created in-house with help from makeup artists and will be on show in the brand's two stores in Westfield Stratford City, London and Bluewater Shopping Centre, Kent. They are part of the brand's ongoing #MakeYourMark campaign, launched in December 2017, which encourages people to embrace their so-called "flaws" and reject what "the world perceives as perfection".
Missguided also says it is committed to changing attitudes towards body image within the fashion industry as a whole, so it will be interesting to see if any other high street retailers introduce the same modifications to their dummies.
The retailer isn't the first to change its mannequins for the better, of course. Debenhams introduced size 16 mannequins, diverging from the usual size 8 or 10, in its stores back in 2013 to reflect the average UK dress size.
A study published in the Journal of Eating Disorders last year found that the average female shop mannequin in the UK looks very underweight, helping to reinforce an unhealthy “ultra-thin” ideal, which just goes to show the importance of Missguided's latest move. People need to see themselves reflected back at them when they go shopping.
The response to Missguided's decision to stop airbrushing its models was overwhelmingly positive, with people on social media hailing it as bold, refreshing and "a step in the right direction".
"This makes me feel so much better, after seeing my stretch marks in a changing room mirror yesterday I nearly cried," one woman tweeted. If that's anything to go by, we're sure the mannequins will go down a treat.
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