December 26, 2006
As the body mass index of runway walkers continues to make headlines, skinny models just might present a whole new problem for editors.
Everyone has a story of a celebrity cover slimmed by Photoshop, but several editors have been quietly ordering the retouching of gaunt model shots to make them look, well, a little plumper.
“A model shows up and you realize she’s too thin and has lost weight since the booking, but the show must go on,” said Allure editor in chief Linda Wells. “When the film comes to me, I realize I don’t want to see hip bones and ribs in the magazine.”
Enter the retouching process, which helps make the haggard look healthier.
“If a girl shows up at a shoot and she’s too skinny, a good stylist can pose her so that the reader doesn’t have as much of a sense of it,” said Lucky editor in chief Kim France. But, she added, “There are angles at which a girl’s arm can look haunting.”
One only needs to compare runway shots of the same model — often sporting countable ribs — with fashion spreads in magazines to see the transformation.