It was recently reported that Beyoncé had been upset at the fact that H&M had retouched the shape of her body in their newest swimsuit campaign featuring her. Sources say that Beyoncé demanded that only natural pictures could be used. H&M happily complied with the superstar's request and stated only that "both H&M and Beyoncé are very happy with the campaign".
H&M is also recently being commended for featuring plus size model, Jennie Runk, wearing their swimsuit collection without advertising the fact that she was plus size. It seems H&M is starting to give us what the people want! We so badly want to see normal looking shapes advertising the clothes we love so we can love our bodies too!
CEO Karl-Johan Persson comments that "We have a huge responsibility here. We're a large company, many people see us, and we advertise a lot. We want to show diversity in our advertising and not give people the impression that girls have to look a particular way. By and large, I think we've succeeded: we've many different kinds of models from different ethnic backgrounds. In our last campaign we had a somewhat more buxom model, and now we're using Beyoncé, who's a bit curvier as well. I believe that the models in our advertising should look sound and healthy."
H&M's CEO also added that the company has made some mistakes in the past by using models that had been "too skinny" and that they are working towards using more diverse models. They have made a pledge to only use healthy models in its advertising campaigns going forward. What I appreciate is the comment that Persson made about still using skinny models as long as they are healthy: "There are models who are too thin or obviously underweight, but there are also those who're just thin, and they're the ones we should keep working with, as a long as they look sound and healthy."
I love that we can focus on healthy and Average instead of ideal! What I'd like to see next is this company to start using models that are in between "plus size" and "skinny" categories....and no airbrushing of any kind! Do you think this is possible in the near future?
Just a thought: Do you think that H&M changed its tune after it was rumoured they were the company with the plus size mannequins (when in actuality it was Swedish department store Ahlens??