Body inclusivity is very important in the fashion and beauty industries, since it shows the positive values of self-love and respect. Include the principles of body inclusivity in your image consulting business to reach more clients and offer them a satisfying experience. For instance, the plus size fashion market is in full expansion since just a few years ago it began to be considered by the industry.
The offer of plus sizes in the global market
Also, the number of models of different races is increasing. The data extracted by NPD, one of the main market research firms, maintains that in the US market this sector grew by 18% in 2021, compared with 2019, the last year before the pandemic. A pace that is three times faster than that of the rest of the segments and that also reaches different generations and social groups equally.
It is a growth linked to the increase in demand. Today, people with plus sizes also want to be stylish and demand a tailor-made offer. The underwear market has already been a pioneer in inclusive sizes, showing that consumers spend in categories in which they feel represented. Image consultants play a big role in encouraging clients with plus sizes to love themselves and feel confident in their bodies.
How image consultants defend body inclusivity
An image consultant has the knowledge to select an elegant and chic wardrobe that suits people with different sizes and body features. That is why it is fundamental that image consultants focus on enhancing the potential of every client to make them look their best and boost their self-esteem. In addition, image consultants can advise the clients who are willing to lose weight on good workout routines and healthy eating habits.
Image consultants build the outfits that fit and suit every person perfectly regardless of their size or skin color. Since they are experts in combining colors and building stylish wardrobes, they know which clothes and accessories look best on every person. Image consultants help their clients embrace their unique features and feel confident. Moreover, they order custom-tailored items for their clients so the pieces are really well-fitting, since many brands do not make clothes with sizes for everyone. That is why image consultants should promote body inclusivity and include it in their business’ morals and ethics.
The future of body inclusivity
However, there is still a long way to go. At the beginning of the year, the big data company Edited analyzed the most sought-after trends in online stores and put numbers on how many of them reached the largest sizes. The results speak for themselves: only 34% of clothing items. On the catwalk, although racial diversity is beginning to be a reality, body diversity is costing considerably more: only 1.81% of the models who walked the catwalk in the current season, spring-summer 2022, had a non-normative size.
The movements around the “body positive” that advocate the eradication of stereotypes that relate beauty to a single body type have gained more strength on different platforms. Although much of what people see on the Internet is loaded with examples about the way a body “has” to look, little by little this has been changing, especially among the younger generations. All this has been identified as a market trend, and some of the big fashion brands have repositioned themselves as manufacturers of inclusive fashion: from petite sizes to extra large sizes. That way, the brands improve in terms of social responsibility. Image consultants should only work with brands that have a modernized and developed philosophy on body inclusivity.
Although retail is in decline and online purchases are increasingly in demand, the truth is that people create buying habits in well-known sites that meet their demands in terms of prices, sizes or styles. Rebranding campaigns are truly focused on the expectations of a usually segregated market. Beauty is not always related to perfect, established proportions. Beauty goes further, it is about accepting and being accepted, being identified with something and showing your true self to the world. One can be stylish with attitude and self-esteem, but for this you have to stop following traditional stereotypes. Those are the basics of body inclusivity.
Inclusion starts from the catwalk and reaches the shop windows, the catalogs or the promotion campaigns of the brands’ collections. The firms have been applying these small changes in different ways, and although the road is long, it is clear that the industry is becoming aware of the importance of sending a healthy and positive message in its creations. As well, there are several influencers who succeed with great success on the social networks and have managed to break stereotypes and prejudices. They bring hope to their followers.
LIST OF BRANDS THAT OFFER GREAT PLUS-SIZE CLOTHES
- Big Bud Press
- Tamara Malas
- Loud Bodies
- Ava & viv
- 11 honoré
- Universal standard
- Old navy
- Who what wear
- Dia & co
- Universal thread
- Wild fable
RACE DIVERSITY IN FASHION
Diversity means “the mixture” of something. It is the difference within a group of people. That difference can be gender, sexuality, disability, body image… In the fashion and beauty industry, diversity can be measured by analyzing who are the people who are chosen to represent a brand in its advertising campaigns or on its catwalks.
So, why does fashion have a role to play in racial equality? Because it is one of the largest industries in the world; a sector that represents self-expression and creativity. Fashion not only sells clothes, it sells self-esteem and personal identity. For there to be real change, every part of society must be reformed. Therefore, it is essential that the fashion and image consulting sectors support body inclusivity and diversity because they are focused on people’s images and appearances.
At New York Spring Summer 2020 Fashion Week, 47% of the models walking the runway were black. In 2015, only 17% of the models on the catwalk were black. Fashion campaigns seem to be moving in the right direction, towards more diverse representation. Fashion brands, in general, want to be seen by the public as more progressive and update their image to keep up with social change.
There have never been more than one or two black editors-in-chief of major magazines in the United States, and only one black designer leading a major American fashion brand. Until August 2018, no black photographer had shot the cover of Vogue. Even at New York Fashion Week 2020 there were only 9 black designers showing up, even though there were over 80 events and shows that took place during the week; as listed on the official NYFW schedule website.
This is where inclusivity becomes very relevant, since the real change is much deeper than just having black people in an ad campaign or on a runway. The models can represent an image of the company; and it is beneficial to see models of color and different races like the Asian in these campaigns. Consumers need to research the brands they are investing in and supporting.
Image consultants can help people of all races and body sizes to love themselves for who they are and to maximize their potential. Everyone is beautiful and attractive in their own way, and the professionals in the fashion and styling industry can give confidence and joy to everyone.
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