Retail outlet Urban Outfitters has been forced to remove an ‘irresponsible and very harmful’ thigh gap image from its website by the UK Advertising Standards Authority.
The image, which showed a young woman wearing polka dot knickers, sparked outrage at a very large thigh-gap, with shoppers commenting on the extremity of the image which also sported slimmed down thighs and knees:
The UK Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) deemed the image ‘unhealthily thin’ and warned they would not support the effects of an image of a “noticeably underweight model was likely to impress upon that audience that the image was representative of the people who might wear Urban Outfitters’ clothing.”
In the full statement from the ASA, the authority outlined the dangerous implications of encouraging underweight models in ad campaigns:
“The complainant, who believed that the model in the picture was unhealthily thin, challenged whether the ad was irresponsible and harmful.
“We considered that the model was very thin, and noted, in particular, that there was a significant gap between the model’s thighs, and that her thighs and knees were a similar width.
“We understood that Urban Outfitters’ target market was young people and considered that using a noticeably underweight model was likely to impress upon that audience that the image was representative of the people who might wear Urban Outfitters’ clothing, and as being something to aspire to. We therefore concluded that the ad was irresponsible.”
The retailer later removed the image, and replaced it with the following edit:
Speaking about the ruling to ban the image, a spokesperson for Urban Outfitters claimed they don’t believe the image is a problem.
The company said it was “common practice to use slim models in the underwear industry”, and that the firm “did not consider that the model was underweight or unhealthily thin”.
Lead Image Via Buzzfeed