Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Primark removes ultra-thin, rib-baring mannequins

Primark, the British retail store involved in an apparent slave-labor hoax earlier this summer, is back in the spotlight after receiving negative feedback about their new mannequins.

Primark removes ultra-thin, rib-baring mannequins

Primark, the British retail store involved in an apparent slave-labor hoax earlier this summer, is back in the spotlight after receiving negative feedback about their new mannequins. (via Twitter)
Primark, the British retail store involved in an apparent slave-labor hoax earlier this summer, is back in the spotlight after receiving negative feedback about their new mannequins. (via Twitter)

Primark, the British retail store involved in an apparent slave-labor hoax earlier this summer, is back in the spotlight after receiving negative feedback about their new mannequins.

The chain was quick to respond via Twitter when a shopper tweeted out an image of its rib-bearing mannequin saying they’d look into it. Days later, Primark announced the mannequins would be removed.

 

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Should mannequins represent various body types?
Yes
No

 

Despite their vow to take down the display, the image of the very slim mannequin had already been retweeted over 2,000 times. Many users seemed displeased with the appearance of the mannequins calling them "disgusting," "shocking" and "utterly terrifying."

Jezebel, however, pointed out that while the mannequins may encourage unhealthy body image expectations, many women look like that, citing a trend toward more realistic looking mannequins. American Apparel, for example, was lambasted after displaying mannequins with pubic hair. JCPenny recently created a window display with mannequins molded after real people from a wheelchair-clad veteran to a 6-foot-tall female college basketball player.

Earlier this year, lingerie boutique La Perla faced similar flack when their mannequins appeared with protruding ribs. An image of their eye-catching display made its way to Twitter and was removed from the store window soon thereafter.

In this situation, diversity is key. If mannequins were made to represent an array of body types rather than just one ideal, a thin, ribbed mannequin might not seem so offensive, but rather a representation of a real-life build.

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