No, Models Aren't Supposed to be "Sexy"... And, No, the Fashion Industry Isn't Conspiring to Make Us Starve Ourselves

#battleroyale #TeamRJ

In the world of the internet, certain things are just inevitable. Like the fact that, if an argument drags on long enough, someone will eventually be compared to Hitler and/or the Nazis.

And... the topic of today's breakfast club:

In any discussion of "hot" women... Someone's eventually going to trot out fashion models as an example.

Specifically, editorial models. The kind you see in fashion layouts, in glossy magazines and the like.

...Or commercial models, like the Victoria's Secret angels. (Most commercial models come from editorial careers anyway, so this is really "Play it again, Sam." Which no one ever actually said in a movie, by the way.)

At this point -- since the internet is, after all, the internet -- the discussion usually devolves into a cloud of bitter obscenities gargled from froth-corrupted lungs.

"Men are such filthy fucking pigs!"

"They're promoting anorexia!"

"They want us to feel bad about ourselves!"

Pull up a chair.

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Ridiculously Wrong Piece of Crazy Insanity #1: "(Straight) MEN like fashion models."

I hear this WAY too often.

The idea that the waif physique is something perpetrated upon women by a global conspiracy of straight men, for their own gleeful masturbatory satisfaction (and perhaps to keep a lid on food prices, too... WHO KNOWS D00D).

I mean...

Ahahahaha hahahah hahahahha hahahah haha hahahaahahaahah hahah.

Hahah hahah ahahha aha ha.

Ha.

Not that this DESERVES a serious response -- if you've gotten to know more than 0 straight men in your entire life, you'll already realize how insane it is -- but, since I'm in a giving mood today, here are two actual pieces of scholarly research, to back up what everyone already knows anyway:

1)

Women's own ideal (for the female body) is MUCH thinner than what men find ideally attractive.

In fact, even when specifically trying to guess what men prefer, women STILL choose way too thin.

(Men, on the other hand, are able to guess women's preferences accurately... for female bodies, at least. Men have a shitty grip on what WE like... but that, friends, is another discussion for another day.)

2)

The only men who even somewhat prefer waif-like women, on average, are men who don't think they ever want kids. (Guess they're really not bullshittin', if that extends all the way to their subconscious mate preferences... holy shit.)

...And even THOSE men still prefer female bodies that are curvier and more "fertile"-looking than those of fashion models.

The difference is captured pretty well by this graphic:

...Except it's almost certainly more pronounced than that. Remember, those items were chosen from CELEBRITY "multiple choices" -- so, there probably weren't too many women of more normal proportions from which to pick.

But, regardless, we can safely put to rest this particular ridiculously wrong piece of crazy insanity.

In fact...

Straight men find the fashion-model physique so sexually UNappealing that they don't even look at THOSE parts of the models.

I shit you not.

"Eye-tracking heatmaps" show where viewers look, from blue (least time) to red (most time). This is a heatmap for STRAIGHT MEN looking at a Dolce & Gabbana fragrance ad:

Straight men. NOT EVEN LOOKING AT THE TITS.

Oh wait. It gets better:

Yep... men... NOT EVEN LOOKING AT A BARE ASS.

...When it's on a girl who ain't got ass.

(Side point: We look at the shoes. Men don't. Lol ahahahahha)

Okay, I think we've settled this one.

Anyone who thinks that fashion models are supposed to be "sexy" -- to men -- has officially lost their grip on reality.

If they ever had one.

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So... alright, we know fashion models are chosen to appeal to women.

Duh.

Now... let's talk about THAT.

Because... um... yeah. There is, to put it lightly, a great deal of misunderstanding on that side of the aisle, too.

Ridiculously Wrong Piece of Crazy Insanity #2: "Fashion models are chosen to make normal women feel shitty about themselves."

Uh...

First... Like what the fuck? Let's just stop and think about that, for a sec.

Fashion houses are BUSINESSES. They SELL THINGS. They sell really, really expensive -- and completely frivolous -- goods.

If you want to sell someone really, really expensive things that she doesn't actually need?

Uh...

You don't do that by making her feel shitty and fat.

High-end couture marketing gives women something to ASPIRE to.

"Aspirational" is a buzzword that you'll see in the prospectus of just about every single high-end brand in the world, like, say, Hermès.

Annnnnnd THIS... this... is the reason why editorial models look like editorial models, kiddies. It's so fucking simple that it hurts.

Wait for it...

Women are physically inspired -- generally speaking -- by other women their size or slimmer.

Like... duhhhh.

This is another one of those things that no one should ever NEED to back up with research. But, like I said... Giving mood, today.

Peep it: Women's own BMI's, versus the BMI's they found most attractive (or "aspirational", in marketing terms).

That pink line is where the x- and y-values are equal. (Nice tricky axis scales there, guys!)

Yep, there are exactly TWO data points there for women who picked "preferred" or "inspirational" bodies bigger than their own.
And both of those women were quite slim -- BMI's between 17 and 18 -- and, in both cases, the difference was so tiny as to be pretty much negligible. (Those two data points are only a few pounds off of the pink line. That's a few glasses of water, or a nice bowl of soup, away from having the same BMI.)

And there you go. That's why fashion models look like ... well, fashion models.

The ideal fashion model is "inspiring" or "aspirational" to as many female consumers as possible.

In other words... She's slimmer than EVERYONE, but without actually looking like she's sick or diseased.

So, she looks like...
...A fashion model.

It ain't complicated.

Businesses want to sell things... so they want to make people want to buy things. As many people as possible. I KNOW RIGHT? Like omfg that's cray.

__

Now, let's take the cold, hard bayonet of reality and skewer some reasonable ideas.

__

Reasonable Idea that Turns Out to be Totally Wrong #1: "Overweight models make overweight women feel better about themselves."

I mean... sure, this sounds reasonable. The usual line of reasoning: Thinner models make bigger women feel shitty about themselves -- so, naturally, bigger models should help them feel less shitty about themselves.

Totes plausible.

...But totes wrong.

Sry try again.

In actual reality, thinner models make bigger women feel shitty about themselves... and bigger models ALSO make bigger women feel shitty about themselves.

Basically, thinner models make bigger women feel inadequate by comparison... but bigger models remind bigger women that they're ... well ... bigger.

Ironically, thinner women get a confidence boost from BOTH types of models -- from the thinner models because they're "aspirational", and from the bigger models because they feel superior by comparison.

Hey, don't yell at me! Go yell at the authors of the study if you need to yell at someone.

Oh, and, go tap Aerie and Dove on the shoulder, and kindly explain why their ad campaigns didn't deliver the expected results.

__

Reasonable Idea that Turns Out to be Totally Wrong #2: "Fashion photos emphasize fashion models."

...The fuck?

How could THAT possibly be wrong?

Aren't we talking about ... pictures of fashion models, here?

Well...

Some editorial layouts and ads for ya.

Have a look.

If you've looked at fashion photography much -- and paid attention much -- you'll realize how LITTLE attention is actually given to the models, comparatively speaking.

You know why? I'll tell you why.

When models are too "in-your-face", female consumers react with hostility and defensiveness -- and form negative associations with the brand.

When models are photographed more peripherally -- and/or as secondary to the activity in which they are engaging -- those same consumers find the advertising "aspirational", and form favorable impressions of the brand.

Fashion houses have known this for decades and decades, but I can't find any research study older than this one. I have the full article -- if you want it, just ask.

Oh -- This ESPECIALLY goes for brands that have the potential to be branded with that scarlet "S" for "slutty".

Reasonable Idea that Turns Out to be Totally Wrong #3: "Women think fashion models are sexy... where sexy means, like, sexy."

Again...

Noooope.

After reading the above, you should already understand this one.

Sex appeal is forward, direct, and INTIMIDATING -- and puts most women on the defensive. This is the same unfortunate instinct that leads all too many women to yell "slutttttt!" at any beautiful woman who might dare to wear "something that reminds ya she's a woman" (as my husband would say).

SMART branding, in fact, involves models who DON'T flip the sex-appeal switch in women's minds.

Victoria's Secret is currently the most popular clothing brand in the world... in no small part because NONE of its advertising could EVER be accused of being "forward" or "slutty".

No Victoria's Secret ad will EVER put the model's sexuality front and center. The brand's appeal is built on "playful!" "carefree!" "mb I'll adult... someday!"

(This isn't hate by the way -- I'm a card-carrying Angel VIP, so, I got got.)

This is a typical VS ad:

Anything and everything BUT sex, happening there. This picture makes me think "sleepover", which is fun, but also the least sexy thing ever.

If I were still in the dating market, that picture would also make me think... "These women are not threats."

NOT THREATS.

Aspirational.

And ... there ya go.

You now understand fashion marketing.

Class dismissed.


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What Guys Said 28

  • I can get behind this myTake (or at the very least, can't argue against) *almost* entirely. My only big point of contention is the statement regarding straight men (who want kids) not finding the models appealing.

    Speaking personally, I find the "man's ideal woman" version more attractive than the left. However, I still find the left attractive. And, likewise, I'd go to say that the vast majority of editorial models are still considered "attractive" to me. (Note: This is also speaking from a straight dude who likes the idea of having kids, so one cannot disregard my opinion on that note lol.)

    Now, I can't claim to regard myself as a representation for all men, but I think that from what I've seen around, many men would still find the "woman's ideal woman" to be attractive. Maybe not ideal as you first said, but certainly not unappealing like you later said.

    I can accept the base ideas of your myTake, although I believe some parts were exaggerated that hurt your points (i. e. quote in contention: "Straight men find the fashion-model physique so unappealing...") It leads the reader to almost draw conclusions that models (specifically editorial) are unnattractive, in which I would say they quite aren't.

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    • "The camera adds ten pounds" is a real thing -- and, when photo shoots are not happening, ultra thin women are not always dressed in stylish clothes that accentuate their silhouettes so well.

      I mean... dude I speak only from experience. My weight never fluctuated by more than 10-15 lbs, but, whenever I was *up* 10-15 lbs, male attention always EXPLODED. From randoms, and also from every boyfriend I ever had, and from my husband, too.
      ... And these were guys who met me at my normal weight, so, it's not like their eyes were broken when we met.

      But, dude... sry if this wasn't clear, but, fashion models -- including me, back in the day -- are still significantly thinner even than the "woman's ideal woman".
      Back then, my weight fluctuated between about 118 and 132 lbs. I'm 6'2". At the bottom, that's a BMI of about 15.
      Find BMI 15 on that scatterplot with the pink line -- it's basically below ALL the data points.

      The left-hand figure ("women's ideal") is more like BMI 17, which is

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    • Well, I haven't seen editorial models in real life, so alas, I can only judge by the camera/photos. Even then I can admit I've only been exposed to a limited amount... Commercials, snippets of magazines, random city ads, whatnot. I can only imagine the complimentary clothing and shtuff-- you would know about that much more than I would.
      With that in mind, I've also seen some sickly looking runway sorta girls that were ungodly skinny. Now that looked bad from what I've seen. If the images and weights and situations you are describing are sorta like that, I'm on board with what you are saying and have no more qualms.

      I was more so looking at the picture in the take and thinking to myself "ehh she is still pretty, even if almost too thin." Then I interpreted the myTake as saying "this is base example of an editorial model." Hey, maybe I misinterpreted what you were saying here, and if I did, that's 'totes' on me.

    • okay, I suppose there's some ambiguity.

      The brunette in the two Katharine Hamnett tearsheets (the black-and-whites) has BMI ≈ 16. The woman on the right (sitting down) in the Grace Coddington editorial (with the 3 women in the retro outfits) has a BMI ≈ 15.5. Both figures lie below "woman's ideal woman", which is normally somewhere in the 17-18 range depending on exactly which women are being surveyed.

      The other two women in the Coddington layout... their necks look weird to me, so, I'm guessing photoshop? That's a Vogue layout, and Vogue doesn't retouch *too* heavily, but those poses look weird enough that I kinda don't want to slap numbers on them. (If I HAD to say, I'd say BMI ≈ 15 for them.)

      The blonde bending over the washer in the first KH ad, and the woman in the Fusion editorial (out in the chaparral/rocks), I really can't get numbers on, since their poses are too weird. Esp the Fusion girl, with her legs in the foreground like that.

  • I'm legitimately APPALLED and AMAZED by this Take! It might as well be the BEST TAKE I'VE EVER READ!

    This actually explains perfectly well why I NEVER find supermodels attractive, NEVER! I always said they're scrawny and not sexually appealing to me at all - and look, it's because that's what they were inherently designed for!

    Honestly, I feel kinda stupid not having realized that supermodels are not appealing because they are supposed to appeal to women and not men.

    I guess what I'll never understand is why females feel like they should "aspire" to be a thinner body than what men find sexually attractive.

    What's the point of aspiring to have an unattractive body? I don't get it!

    I DON'T GET IT

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    • Hah, glad I could help. (:

      "I guess what I'll never understand is why females feel like they should 'aspire' to be a thinner body than what men find sexually attractive."

      ^^ To this... You're pretty much implying that we shouldn't aspire to anything other than what *men* want.
      ... Huh?
      I mean... The psychology is obviously complicated, but, it is what it is -- and guys would do well to just *understand* that this stuff is the case.

      Besides, the same is true for guys who work out. Men's ideal for their own muscularity is pretty much *always* more than what the average straight woman actually wants. Sometimes a LOT more.
      ... Am I gna respond to that with "I DON'T GET IT"?
      Well... no.
      Because, frankly, I get the fact that men actually have certain physical goals for (*gasp*) THEIR OWN REASONS, beyond just appealing to women. Shocker, right?

      Same thing in the other direction. I know it's *crazy* that we might actually have physical goals FOR OURSELVES... but, yeah, that's

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    • Status. Being thin these days is higher status and viewed positively. Being muscular brings status, even when they go over board. Cars, clothes, ridiculous food? Status, also novelty, but don't underestimate status.

      In any social species, status is all about securing resources and sexual access. So "we shouldn't aspire to anything other than what *men* want" isn't accurate, but on a fundamental level this is what we do. There's no necessity for all of this kind of behaviour to be conscious. We pursue status because it makes us feel good -- and that's all girls will ever have to say when you ask them about why the want to look the way they do -- but it's evolved to feel good because being high status is good for the continuity of your bloodline. In a very indirect and unconscious way virtually everyone aspires to be sexually appealing.

      We're all just animals, don't get uptight about it.

    • @AllThatSweetJazz Ah, that explains a lot. I don't care about status, I care about money :D

  • Their bodies aren't sexy but their faces have to look good. That's usually done by makeup and photoshop. Only supermodels have a pretty face with and without makeup.

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    • Supermodels have a certain kind of look. Their faces actually tend to have a pretty masculine character in general -- including a REALLY strong jawline.

      Here's Alessandra Ambrosio, for instance... you could cut diamond with that jaw
      media.vogue.com/.../...uty-alessandra-ambrosio.jpg

    • i remember you told me the same thing about Karlie Kloss. Why do the fashion industries pick supermodels with strong jaw lines?

    • They don't DIRECTLY select for that.

      They select for high, prominent cheekbones. If a woman has the right kind of cheekbones, then she'll have the "cheek hollows" -- which, relatively, will make her jaw look more prominent.
      The effect increases with age, too. Look at Angelina Jolie now:
      i.dailymail.co.uk/.../...lina_Jolie_attends_a_.JPG

      Notice her cheekbones and cheek hollows -- and then just use common sense to think about how that affects the look of her jawline.

  • Well actually I do often find them attractive in their photoshoots but the main thing I like about models is their faces and that they are often topless/naked, withboiled skin, and they are usually making sexually suggestive facial expressions.

    Like if a girl with an average face but the same body was in the picture, I wouldn't be attracted to her at all.

    Also when I see their bodies in pictures where they are not modeling ( without the skin oil, no photoshop, and no beautiful scenery behind her) then I am actually dissapointed at how plain I find them.

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    • Oiled skin*

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    • Normally I don't go back to correct spelling errors but this time I thought it was nessesary lol 😅

    • yah, good call lol

  • Excellent. This message needs to be written in the sky in giant letters. Models are not meant to be sexy. They are meant to be a living clothes hanger to display new fashions on a runway.

    If you want to see the sort of women with bodies men find sex, look at porn stars. Their bodies have to look good and be desirable. Some of them are tiny and petite, with small breasts. Others are voluptuous and have large breasts and booty. Some are obese, some are less than 100lbs. Each man has his own particular dream and you can bet there's porn stars who fit that ideal.

    Oh, and there are former models turned porn stars. Zoe Voss is one.

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    • "If you want to see the sort of women with bodies men find sex, look at porn stars"
      ^^ I was thinking about talking about that, but the take was pretty long as it is. And, I don't know where one would get reliable data on that. (There's that Billion Wicked Thoughts book that came out recently-ish, but I don't remember how quantitative that book was.)

      Of note, amateur porn -- "warts and all" -- is BY FAR the most popular type of porn. And BBW porn is way way way way way way WAY more popular than porn of super skinny chicks (... so much so, in fact, that the latter is almost vanishingly rare).

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    • Kim K lol... ironic you'd say that, it's mostly women (in my experience) who are all ga-ga over her. Guys are mostly like "uhhh I'd fuck her and live off her money, but that's about it"

      Also, Kim is short (I think she's... what, like 5'2" or something?)
      That's another thing most women don't understand! Most women think being short is a *disadvantage* in the mating game. But, realistically speaking, shorter women have the most options by far, most of the time.
      As far as I see it, the only major disadvantage of being short (as a woman) is that you'd get a lot of "faux dominance" from guys, if dominance is something that's important to you. (If a guy is genuinely dominant with me, at my height -- especially if he's shorter than me -- then that shit ain't fake.)

    • Also, runway models ≠ editorial/commercial models. Runway is a whole different animal altogether. See Tarvold's comment thread.

  • I like this take.

    Fashion modelling is about MONEY however and In order to get money they need to appease and inspire. For example when I see male models (David Gandy is my man crush) I'm envious and inspired.

    However it can go both ways, models may be advertised to make bigger girls feel inferior/bad so that they slim down and buy the products... you never know advertising these days... and their strategic planning to impose jealousy to sell. Maybe this is my conspiracy theory here.

    VS girls are super hot though, and no matter what bigger girls will hate on them.

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    • "models may be advertised to make bigger girls feel inferior/bad so that they slim down and buy the products..."
      They do feel bad -- and they do adjust their health-related behavior accordingly, on average, too -- but, I'm not sure whether fashion advertisers would take THAT much upon themselves.
      Check out the last 2 paragraphs in the LEFT column of the third page (marked page 206) of this:
      www.acrwebsite.org/volumes/v35/naacr_vol35_285.pdf

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    • Haha yes, that's true in America, it's all about the melting pot. Actually my dad has Polish-Hungarian roots (on his dad's side) his mum's side has German-Polish roots so for centuries my Polish side has been speaking German AND Polish due to being raised on the boarder with Germany... so their kids were also taught to speak German too... During the Second World War this also saved them from being shot, because they spoke German they were forced into joining the German army, or working in German tank and gun factories. In England there's a growing consensus that religions and cultures are assimilating much faster now than ever so less and less cultures are keeping to themselves, my generation for example, blacks, whites and browns don't care about race, hell I don't even recognise race just bros and friends. And yes that's true, since English is the most spoken language, however I still wish my parents spoke Polish and German to me, i'd have succeeded much further.

    • Haha my dad had to learn Russian due to the Russian rule over Poland, where books, scripts, and everyday life was pretty much Russian... Awwh I'm sorry to hear that <3 And you're part Native American too then? And that's very interesting too haha! My brother came straight from Poland to South Africa at the age of 11 and now has a full on South African accent and now has actually forgotten to speak Polish. I was born in SA and I think I still have a very slight SA accent, I sure as hell had an extremely strong one at the age of 5 when I moved to GB though, up until the age of around 6-7. I get dressed up for nothing :p always good to look fresh no matter what. Oo yeah, I might even consider going to Germany after my degree or during…since I know German and I have roots there too, a lot of family actually.

  • Insane #1. True, but the content is bullshit
    cf.girlsaskguys.com/.../...6-ab4f-4a576ae465bb.jpg
    It's like saying that there is an ideal appearance which is universally beautiful.
    Plus, what we like and what we want to become are completely two different things.
    And what was the point to include that visual attention pattern? Even in porn videos, you will find out that men focus a lot on the face.

    Insane #2. Who says that?

    Reasonable #1. False. Have you ever talked to fat women? Observed their behaviour? Noticed their blind affection towards Ashley Graham?

    Reasonable #2. Who says that?

    Reasonable #3. Really? Who says that?

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    • Asian born Asian men care about face but always prefer the thinnest girl they can find

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    • @COCOCHANEL lol they're inferior people who criticise you for saying "looks matter". If you have free time, ridicule them for their ignorance, they deserve it haha

      Well, I'll believe you. I don't see much Japanese girls on daily basis. I've just seen them in porn or as singers. It must be true that there are pear shaped girls because comparing them to the North-Eastern girls from India (who have a bit similar E-Asiatic features), the Japanese girls have better defined shape.

    • @COCOCHANEL
      IMHO and as a girl with actual hips and waist proportion, calling Japanese girls pear shaped is practically a joke. They aren't pear shaped, they are almost straight or with shoulders wider than their hips. Especially the younger crowd, but most of the population (at least where I live) and the fashion reflects that.

      There's no difference between curvy and chubby because... they are NOT curvy, there isn't even such a notion. It's either thin, chubby or fat.
      Many if not most men prefer thin or skinny, but then they're usually skinny themselves. Some prefer thin just to show off to his friends and take home for "genetics", not for sex. They're egocentric, always controlling what the other eats and body shaming them, and not out of love or concern for their health.
      Personally, I find that in most loving relationships, both of them are not even skinny, just healthy and accepting of their partner (within reason).

  • LOL... "class dismissed" - I wrote about this exact topic, with similar but much less insightful details, specifically using VS as a case study, for my finals paper in my MBA ethics class. Though I must admit, it was partially an excuse to watch the VS fashion show and call it homework.

    Anyways, I have another theory on this, which I only have anecdotal evidence for, but perhaps you can help me confirm it - that is, the fashion industry is largely run by women and gay men. Fashion/catwalk models are chosen largely by gay male fashion to make their clothes look good, and straight men are getting blamed for something they didn't do.

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    • Oh, runway models? Yeah, runway models are basically walking clothes hangers.

      I agree that straight men unfairly bear the brunt of the "blame" here -- and I wrote as much, in this take -- BUT, I don't think RUNWAY models have anything to do with that, at all.

      First of all, most people -- including most women -- don't even really realize that runway models ≠ editorial/commercial models.

      Second of all, runway models are REALLY WEIRD-LOOKING.
      Their physiques are weird, sure (which normally doesn't matter much, because runway clothes tend to be gaudy and oversized -- they aren't the same as the ready-to-wear collections).
      But... their FACES are also weird-looking. Look at some runway models sometime dude.
      Since you're sufficiently nerdy to appreciate it... here's just one example: Runway models tend to have almost ZERO depth to their supraorbital ridge (brow bone). In other words, their eyes are as close as possible to being in the same

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    • usually way shorter than underwear models (usually 5'5" to 5'9", versus 5'11"-6'3" -- again, to emphasize or de-emphasize the triangle shape, respectively)
      This is Tim Gabel (27" waist in this picture)
      s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/.../...92cc8a3f78.jpg

      BIG differences.
      (Marky Mark is REALLY short for an underwear model, but he was a singer/rapper first.)

      __

      that pic of Kellan Lutz didn't work, here it is again.
      34" waist
      farm4.static.flickr.com/.../...6609_96574c3ba9.jpg

    • ... Also, as I just typed in FatherJack's comment, the fact that lots of designers are gay has nothing to do with anything. Gay men and design just happen to come together a lot -- whether it's fashion design or any other kind of design.

  • Well thank goodness. Now I don't need to re-evaluate myself when I think A, B or C models aren't attractive to me.

    The girls I consider supermodels in my own world people will laugh at. Some people may even throw up when they see my taste in women.

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    • I'm so curious now -- you gotta throw at least ONE example at me.

      I promise I won't throw up, I don't model anymore. 😂😂🙃🙃😶💋

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    • #teamshorthair <3
      (since... like 2 weeks ago)

      Uh what? You just like glasses. LOL

      Ironically, models photographed in glasses are MUCH more likely to have the supermodel-like strong jawline.

      Supermodels tend to have that jawline (as I explained to "library") because it's a function of having high cheekbones and cheek hollows.
      But, in the case of yr glasses-girls, it's the aesthetic -- a square jaw is more parallel to the glasses frame itself, so it creates a more pleasing overall whole.

      In any case, the final result is that you're looking at faces that are a lot closer to "typical supermodel face" than you might think.

    • Perhaps. But I've always noticed the girls I go for my friends find average at the very best.

      So when do I see an example of YOU in your modelling years?

  • Victoria secret models are actually hella hot lol Only fat chicks like to bring em down cos they mad lmao

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  • Obviously guys don't like women without curves. Women are way too self conscious of their appearance all the time. My girlfriend is guilty of it too. She weighs more than me but is in no way fat. She has put on a couple lbs but I'll just let it go anyway lol

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    • However the Victoria secrets girls are definitely jerk off worthy😀

    • No reason to hate on those girls. Although my girlfriend would not appreciate my affection for them. She can be a little insecure sometimes and a little overbearing. But I wouldn't ever point out that she's being that way. She's so lucky to have me lol

  • This myTake actually explains quite a lot. I've never been a fan of the wispy supermodel types, and their being marketed towards women makes a lot of sense. I'd take a healthy, curvy girl any day.

    You're so knowledgeable about everything, girl. Will you ever cease to amaze me? ;-)

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    • Haha thanks.

      I suppose 90% of seeming "knowledgeable" is just shutting up about the stuff I *don't* know much about. LOL

    • True that! Stick to the stuff you do know, that way people can't tell what you don't know. Haha.

  • This is excellent, thanks! While you say this stuff shouldn't need to be backed up by research, I am not sure men are as generally aware of it.

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    • They just might not consciously think about it, yeah... but, if you put the question to most guys, I'm sure they'd realize that *most* women aren't inspired by other women who are bigger than they are. "Thinspo" is a thing for a reason.

      Not the same in every demographic, of course -- where I was growing up (poorer parts of Long Beach) I was INSANELY jealous of the girls who actually had ass and hips. Still am, actually. I swear, every other girl in my middle and high schools was a damn video vixen.
      But... that isn't the demographic of couture ads.

    • Speaking of video vixens, I was wondering if you had any thoughts on a not-terribly-related topic: age disparity in films. A lot of people (women?) complain about the great age difference between many of the leading men and their romantic interests on film. Yet these movies seem most popular with women. Is this really some Hollywood worship of youth by male directors and producers, as we are told, or could there be some insidious marketing reason behind it?

  • Great myTake. You had me all the way through. Well written and well argued.

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    • Thanks!

      I remember, you complimented my writing itself last time. (as opposed to the content) <3 That made my day

    • Your writing is excellent. I love that you back up everything you say with links. I am the anal type who actually clicks on links (or, more accurately perhaps, the curious type). Your humor is also very much appreciated; it helps to keep me reading. Also your use of short, sharp paragraphs is something I -um- aspire to. :)

    • @brain5000 Thank you.

      About the paragraph lengths -- I don't (and can't) read in a straight line. I'm kinda-sorta-like-dyslexic-but-not-REALLY-dyslexic.
      Ever see those word-magnets they sell for refrigerators? That's what ALL sentences and paragraphs look like to me, at first. So... if I can't "organize the cloud" INSTANTLY when looking at it, then the paragraph is too long. (:

      The upside is that I can read regular text INSANELY fast. If there are two spaces after a period, I can read 1500 to 2000 words a minute. (If there's only one space after a period -- please die a slow painful death, whoever caused that large-scale change since the '80's -- it's only about 1000-1200, because the whole damn thing becomes one giant paragraphcloud.)

      The downside is that anything highly technical takes me 6.5 forevers to read, because I actually HAVE to read it in a straight line -- which usually means literally pronouncing it out loud to myself.

  • I have never found these attractive , besides the fashion industry is run by GAY men , hence no interest in curves.

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    • There are lots of gay fashion designers -- but not really any more than in any other design field.
      (A similar percentage of, say, housewares designers are gay, too. Like the guys who design that fancy postmodern furniture.)

      It's business, dude. As I explained in the take, the choice of models has EVERYTHING to do with **what will inspire the most women to buy the products**... and NOTHING to do with men's tastes, either gay or straight.

    • Aye , true , women are bigger consumers than men , hence your comment in the last paragraph , totally agree , profit margins are above all.. money doesn't talk , it shouts fucking loud !!

  • You might be the smartest woman I've encountered in my entire life.

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  • Great my take, it amazes me that so many people don't know this already.

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  • So a couple things:

    Like how you brought up Godwin's Law. It funny 'n shit.

    It's about time someone mentioned how the men's ideal female body is bigger than women's ideal. I was starting to get a wee bit annoyed.

    (y)

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    • Hah... Women who know and understand men, will know well enough. A few of my girlfriends and I have a running joke of, basically, "when my man starts lovin' even more on me... I know it's time to diet again" ahahah 😂😂😂😂

  • I'm apparently the outlier in this because I LOVE those waif thin models. I think they have the most attractive bodies

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    • To look at, or to fuck?

      Most men seem to have pretty different idealy for those.
      Not night-and-day different, of course - but significantly different.

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    • Lol
      You may find that the distinction is sharper than you'd thought, once you *do* meet such a woman in real life.

    • There are some good points in this article but it's basically crap. Most guys I know think models are hot but that doesn't mean they don't think curvy, fuller figured women are hot as well. What appeals to one person may not appeal to another. You can't just lump sum people's taste like that. And yes, there are lots of skinny girls walking around in normal society. I have friends with the "waif" model build and trust me, they haven't struggled much in the dating department. It's mostly about chemistry, personality connection, spirituality and common interests. I'm sort of over these articles presenting mumbo-jumbo like concrete facts. We are way too complex!

      Here's another ludicrously comical line in the article..."This picture makes me think "sleepover", which is fun, but also the least sexy thing ever." Yeah, because when guys picture women having a sleepover, sex is the last thing that comes to mind. Ha right.

  • The fashion industry presents clothes on coat hangers ans coat hangers are thin.

    www.glaro-products.com/images_2/hangers3.jpg

    Even the wooden coat hangers are thin:

    www.hangersfactory.com/.../index_coat_hanger.jpg

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  • More from Guys
    8

What Girls Said 19

  • This was really informative, and actually a very fun read (and I ain't saying that just because I'm biased). Once you actually started putting it all together and explaining it my mind went to all of the girls I knew who blamed women in magazines for the reasons why they felt bad.

    I now have a response to them all. Lol.

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  • Honestly, I pretty much always knew those models aren't "sexy" to men. Maybe it's because I'm from the ghetto, but the men always openly stated how they like cornbread and tortilla fed thick women. The big butt trend that is barely hitting white/maintstream America, was pretty much always there in Latino cultures. And black culture as well.
    Victoria Secret models don't make me feel terrible about my body. Women like Ashley Graham, Kim Karshadian, Beyonce, Katy Perry, and Sofia Vergara did. Dont get me wrong, I love their bodies, but I just hated that I didn't look like that. I hated that I didn't have "Latina curves/hips". And yes, I am well aware that not all those women are Latina.

    And the models in Latino anything are overly curvy and sexual. Hell, even our weather girls look ridiculously bootylicious, and growing up it did kinda suck to wait for your "Latina curves" but never get them.

    Now, I don't really care about it as much. You only get one body, you can hate it or change it.

    Also, were the Aerie and Dove campaigns not as successful as stick thin photoshop?

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    • Looool girlfriend... believe me, if I'd walked around for a few hours of any day after age 12 with a parrot on my shoulder, I'd be hearing it squawk "Quién te robó las nalgas?" for the rest of my life.

      Srsly... I was about 120lbs in high school, and I'm 6'2". And I swear to you, every other girl at my school (a school with 6,000 students) was a video vixen.

      I *still* get a damn lump in my throat when I see women with that incredible small waist and that solid shelf of a butt that hardly even MOVES when they walk. It's like I'm staring pure fertility in the face, and losing -- badddd. (I have a bit of a history there, too -- could tell you on pm if you're interested)

      But... srsly... 6'2" 120lbs, girl. I at least knew better than to torture myself, and I could at least play to my strengths. I'm not gna play a game I obviously can't win.

    • Damn you're tall lol

  • actually in japan, the vast majority of straight men prefer model thin girls (and openly state this) and this is a trend in society that has been continuing for a few decades. as thin as possible. they do NOT care for ”curves” as in big breast or a round butt/hips. they don't see it as a trade-off. hourglass is not what appeals to them.

    i've talked to doctors and confirmed that it hasn't always been like this in japan. feminine, soft ”mochi-like” body types used to be preferred. not anymore. it's well known and men say it freely to women and women are intense about being thin.

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    • *Sexually* preferred, though? Or just seen as wifely/matronly?

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    • @FakeName123 i know, but these days people want to be financially stable first. it's the same in the west. that's why so many people abort and/or delay till it's too late

    • I was fascinated to see some of the women volleyball players in the Japanese Olympic team and also the Olympic basket Ball team. They looked very beautiful to me. Normal Japanese women that I get to see in Reflexology videos and Massage videos are usually short and chubby. But they look young may be because of their facial texture. But I will prefer to say that the women basket ball and volley ball players were looking stunningly beautiful.

  • Nice myTake!
    On the VS model topic. Victoria's Secret models are popular because they have drop dead gorgeous faces. Their stunning faces (even though they are fit) is why people are so drawn to them. There are millions of fit women pretty much none of them are as beautiful as a VS model face-wise an VS *knows* this

    s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/.../...75de2dd7e2.jpg
    s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/.../...faedaa5aa4.jpg
    s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/.../...8e20a0658d.jpg
    s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/.../...c1dc418643.jpg
    s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/.../...7136bd93db.jpg

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  • Lmaooooo. Oh, holy hell, I giggled throughout this entire thing. That was the most perfect thing I've read all day... and in a while for that matter. xD Cheers to you, ma'am!

    Also: "At this point -- since the internet is, after all, the internet -- the discussion usually devolves into a cloud of bitter obscenities gargled from froth-corrupted lungs." This sums things up rather well on this site. :P

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  • I always found it weird how women assumed guys like the model body yet (and not all guys like this but) you see guys raving about tits and ass and call me crazy but those models aren't carrying triple Ds or an ass so fat even Nikki would be jealous.
    Anyways for you ladies out there, quit worrying about if you look like what guys like or whatever, some things you can change some things you can't. If you have small hips and you want big hips well tough shit, love who you are and embrace that shit cause someone will be jealous.
    Awesome take btw! :)

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    • "If you have small hips and you want big hips well tough shit"

      ^^ Or, go have babies, and then don't breastfeed them. (: (Breastfeeding leaches the hip and thigh fat that's built up with pregnancy)

      ... ofc that's not going to be the *good* kind of bigger hips... lol.

    • And thank you for the kind words <3

    • Lol no problem! :) <3

  • I think fashion has its own intentions, and since its in a position of power... like any other position of power... it has some intended and unintended affects on its audience. I think you have some great points especially how real life average male attraction works differently, but I'm not entirely convinced the insecurities provoked by the fashion industry are unintentional. Why? Because insecurities bring business. Brings attention. Also, sex appeal doesn't have to be as intense as you describe. It can be subtle.

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    • "insecurities bring business. Brings attention"

      ^^ "Insecurities" is a loaded word, of course, but... yep. The fashion industry has understood this for FAR longer than scholars have. The psych people are only now beginning to study it.

      Basically... The fashion houses know that their models will impact POSITIVELY on the moods -- and spending decisions -- of women who fit BOTH (1) their size ranges AND (2) their target personality, namely the gregarious see-and-be-seen type.

      You'll see #2 in the studies under the guise of "social comparison orientation". Not an exact match but pretty damn close.
      Check this one out, for starters:
      onlinelibrary.wiley.com/.../abstract

      They know what they're doing.

  • Hmmm, I usually see women in VS ads and think "sex" but I might be the quirky one here, and I still buy their products.

    My only question is how the scientists who did the study of where men looked at models executed that study. I'm not sure how many men would look at a models tits if he knew everyone was going to know about it

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    • ahah

      Given how many men *still* can't help themselves, even when they're with women who are honestly pretty rude about the whole "mah ahhhhs are up here" thing... it's definitely significant, even if it's skewed *somewhat* by whatever social inhibition.

    • Yeah. I mean I'll be like "yes, I stare at them too but can you continue making eye contact?"

  • I don't care about Victoria secret models much. They inspire me to lose weight actually. I mean my boyfriend likes my body the way it is now, but I don't like it, so I'm striving to change it.

    I'm going to post a take soon on my weight loss results. Almost there.

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    • Congratulations, and good luck <3

      By the way, I like yr stuff here. You always post things that are well thought out -- especially for yr age. Impressive.

      Yr boyfriend will probably still be pretty damn happy with yr body with a little less weight on it.
      When I was younger, I always noticed a LOT less male attention when I was 10-15lbs down than when I was 10-15lbs up (that's the most my weight really ever fluctuated, not counting pregnancy). So, yeah...
      But, I'm talking ≈118-120lbs versus ≈130-132lbs, and I'm 6'2".
      As long as you're still talking within the normal weight range, I can't really imagine a dude caring that much either way.

      How about yr friends? How are they, as far as being supportive?
      I know that some groups of "frenemies" are all passive-aggressive about this shit ("Live a little! Here, eat this cake!"), while other groups of friends -- like mine -- are genuinely supportive of each other. How are yours?

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    • The guy who downvoted apparently wants to sabotage you too. 😂😂😂

    • He's a hater. I get downvoted for saying I like kittens. XD

  • You totally rock! This is brilliant☆♡☆

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  • Victoria's Secret doesn't make me feel bad about myself. If anything it inspires me to be active and healthy and look after myself.

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    • yep -- "aspirational".

      I really like their branding! Even though I know it's all cooked up by master marketers ahah.

      They don't have VS in the UK, do they?
      •___•

    • Haha yes, we have VS and pink too. It's cute!

    • yah, I was talking about that with goldie757.

      I'm an idiot, I forgot that the fashion show was in London for 2014. Obviously they had a Bond St store by then, if not others.

  • Isn't the "perfect female body according to men" also thin or slim as you may say? I mean the left one is too thin but the right one ain't fat imo!

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    • Still pretty slim, yeah.

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    • early to mid-20's, my weight fluctuated between about 118 and 132 lbs... and I'm 6'2".
      At the bottom, that's a BMI of about 15. (I was actually an editorial model... hence the interest in writing the take.) I'd say that's below the "male interest threshold"... lol.

      I'd like to hear more about the experience you mentioned. Feel free to PM me if you'd rather not describe it on here.

    • I am 5'2" and remained under 100 lbs before hitting my early 20's and I can safely say that I did not look very attractive nor got much attention or compliments as such. But as soon as I increased in weight and got to 110 lbs I started feeling more comfortable with my figure and most clothes fit and flatter me well now. I feel blessed now to be not stick thin but slim 😊

  • Interesting take. :)

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  • Interesting take. 👏👏👏

    I have never found VS ads sexy, it's always seemed cutesy to me.

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    • Right? That's pretty much their entire branding strategy.

      Also, did you know VS *first* got started as a MAN-friendly store?
      I shit you not -- the store first got off the ground as a place where men could feel welcome shopping for "intimates" for their wives. How the times have changed, lol.

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    • I think the first store opened about 4 years ago.

    • Yeah now that I think about it, the 2014 fashion show was in London, so obviously there must have been stores by then ::smacks self on head:: lol.

  • Thank you!!!

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  • maybe I am a girl so that doesn t count but I find them attractive (bi-curious)
    but I have a wide range of what is considered attractive so...

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  • "No Victoria's Secret ad will EVER put the model's sexuality front and center."... all I can do is laugh at the absurdity of this statement.

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  • 9min

    Great my take REMT <3

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  • Plus size model motive me to go on diet because I find them so disgusting that I surely doesn't want to be like them.

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