Debunking Myths Around Modelling

Since the fashion industry was established, to become a model one had to be either conventionally beautiful or exceptionally beautiful based on conventional standards. This is one of the many myths around modelling we are here to debunk!

Even though ticking the boxes of mainstream beauty still holds weight in the modelling world, since the tale 1990s we have been seeing requirements change and boundaries broken.
Personality and confidence are winning the battle while fashion models are becoming role models, with features increasingly relatable to the audience.

However, there are still many misconceptions about the industry that can create confusion.

Let’s touch on some of the most common ones.

By The Photo Studio Australia Team

1. You Need To Be Tall To Be A Model

Flavia Lazarus | Duval Agency

Since runways became a thing, the height of a fashion model had to fit within a very specific range. Over the past few years we have witnessed the industry relax those requirements and more and more often, we see models who are under 5’7” taking the fashion industry by storm.

Kate Moss was the trailblazer in the industry while Flavia Lazarus walked the runway in Australia at 5’5”.

Several mother and international modelling agencies in New York, Paris, Milan and other major fashion markets are now representing models who are “smaller” or “petite”. Rather than looking at just the height of the model, agencies are looking at the complete package, which is more focused on personality and unique features.

Read: How 10 Fantastic Models Found Their Fame

Kate Moss | Pinterest

2. You Need To Be Thin To Be A Model

Elin Estelle | The Photo Studio

That is yet another myth that needs debunking, even though the plus size modelling market is the fastest growing and one of the most important sectors of the fashion industry.

Not only are modelling agencies welcoming models who are curvier and more voluptuous than the usual super thin fashion model, but they are turning them into superstars!

Rather than having plus size modelling agencies that specialise in just plus models, many of the top modelling agencies have divisions devoted solely to their plus models. So, if you are curvy and you feel passionate about modelling, now is the time to shine!

Read: Agency Applications

Anucia de Boer | The Photo Studio

3. You Need To Be Young To Model

Naomi Campbell | Pinterest

People are living healthier and longer than ever before and it’s not an exaggeration to say that 50 is the new 30, especially as successful supermodels from the 90s like Kate Moss, Cindy Crawford and Naomi Campbell have continued to work, leaving the industry open for more talent to step in!
Truth be told the buying force that moves the market is stronger when it comes to consumers over the age of 35.
There is demand for models of all sizes, and similarly, brands are looking for models who will appeal to all demographics.
Clothing manufacturers, health care companies and other important clients are using mature models more and more in their advertising campaigns and promotional material.

If you’ve always dreamed of becoming a model, perhaps this is your chance!

Carol Green | Archer Magazine

4. You Need Perfect Skin To Be A Model

Yvesmark Cherry | Pinterest

Having ‘perfect’ skin is desirable, not only in modelling but in general, however, the standards the industry and society has been following for decades have weighted heavily on the majority of the population.

That being said, the fashion industry has actually been advocating for more diversity when it comes to skin conditions, too!

Models with acne are sharing bare photos of themselves on social media; models with albinism, vitiligo and extreme pigmentation are becoming famous because of it. Mirian Njoh, Winnie Harlow, Souffrant Ralph, Shaun Ross, Sir Maejor and Cara Delevingne who opened up about her psoriasis are only a few of the models making non-perfect skin normal.

Winnie Harlow | Wiki

5. You Need Perfect Hair To Be A Model

Amber Rowan | Dazed Digital

For decades, being a model went hand-in-hand with having long, luscious locks. Curled, wavy or straight, hair had to be shinny and voluminous.
Models of colour with natural hair, or anyone with thin, brittle hair was a secondary option. Now things are different. Famous models took matters in their own hands taking off their wigs on the runway, shaving their heads and getting boy cuts. Nowadays natural hair and unique hairstyles like braids or dreadlocks are celebrated while even models with alopecia have become international success stories by showing their radiant personalities.

Read: How To Get Modelling Work

Cara Delevingne | Pinterest

6. You Need To Be Popular To Be A Model

Ezra Janetzki | Page One Magazine

Seeing Instagram influencers or bloggers land major modelling agency jobs and representation has many wondering: “Do I need to be popular to be a model?”

Of course, popularity has its perks, as visibility and engagement can influence agencies and brands into representing someone who will have guaranteed work, however, when a model has potential social media fame is secondary.

Several models that appeared in Vogue editorials and major Fashion Week runways don’t have a strong online presence yet their talent and professionalism has them standing out and keeps them constantly in demand.

Read: How To Get Modelling Work

Tori Trig | PAP Magazine

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