I may rag on Tyra Banks sometimes, but whatever I say about her “smizing“, I do have a certain respect for the fact that she’s so outspoken and does whatever the hell she wants to on TV. C’mon, remember her “Fa-Fa-Fa-Fashion” with Andre Leon Talley? Can I admit that actually miss those videos? But we’re digressing, because the point that we’re trying to make here is that Tyra can become a great spokesperson for touchy issues because she’s unafraid to speak up. We really appreciated her open letter in The Daily Beast that was written in support of Vogue‘s decision to finally commit to healthier conditions for their models by banning the use of anorexic images and therefore, anorexic models, in the magazine. They’ve also committed to not using underage girls — this means under the age of 16. It’s a small step, but it’s in the right direction.
Tyra, in her letter, admits that, “… the truth is that if I was just starting to model at age 17 in 2012, I could not have had the career that I did. I would’ve been considered too heavy. In my time, the average model’s size was a four or six. Today you are expected to be a size zero. When I started out, I didn’t know such a size even existed.” It can’t be easy to write the words “considered too heavy” for all the world to see, and we respect the fact that she’s gone there. Tyra’s piece basically deals with her optimistic view on this ban, taking her personal history in the modelling world into account. She reveals her own battle with body image, saying, “In my early 20s I was a size four. But then I started to get curvy. My agency gave my mom a list of designers that didn’t want to book me in their fashion shows anymore. In order to continue working, I would’ve had to fight Mother Nature and get used to depriving myself of nutrition.” It’s that vein of thought that has made the industry so unhealthy today.
Luckily, she writes, her mom was her guardian angel in that respect, adding, “As my mom wiped the tears from my face, she said, “Tyra, you know what we’re going to do about this? We’re going to go eat pizza.” We sat in a tiny pizzeria in Milan and strategized about how to turn my curves into a curveball…” Read the letter. It reminded us that we kinda love Tyra!
[Photo: Getty Images]