The controversy surrounding the cover of the February issue of British Cosmopolitan with plus-size girls does not subside on social networks. The editorial board accompanied the photos with the slogan This is healthy. Users outraged that the magazine promotes obesity, despite the fact that overweight people are at risk for covid.
The February cover of British Cosmopolitan looks like this: a smiling plus-size girl stands in a yoga asana against a pink background. She is wearing a skin-tight tracksuit that only emphasizes the very curvaceous forms.
In total, 11 such girls were shot for the main material of the publication. These are influencers, athletes and activists promoting body positivity. The magazine publishes their stories and tells that the girls lead an active lifestyle and live a happy life. But a flurry of criticism fell on the editorial office on social networks. For example, a quote from the UK Twitter segment: “Obesity is the second leading cause of premature death. Sorry, this is not healthy. " Here's another quote, already from the Russian Telegram channel: "Health now looks like this."
They want you to be unhealthy, obese, and uninformed. pic.twitter.com/xZLuR70HTS
- Gina Bontempo (@FlorioGina)
January 3, 2021
In addition, users compared two Cosmopolitan covers - this one, with a plus-size girl, and a 1992 cover with supermodel Claudia Schiffer. And they signed: "We need a time machine." Many people just write that the magazine went too far with body positive.
Bodypositive itself emerged in 1996 under the slogan “My body is my business”. The founders stated that they want to help people take care of themselves in a balanced way and treat themselves with love and humor. And they wanted to make the reaction of society to “non-model forms” more adequate. But over time, the idea of movement has transformed. Supporters of body positivity began to reject any attempts to correct their appearance, and simply taking care of themselves is perceived as something unnatural and imposed by the outside world. And this is no longer body positive, says the editor-in-chief of Maxim magazine Alexander Malenkov.
Alexander Malenkov, editor-in-chief of Maxim magazine “Bodypositive is one of the parts of the program for expanding the norm and moving away from the narrow standard of beauty. And that's great, people are beautiful in their diversity. Another thing is that this concept of the norm rests on health. And when it is no longer healthy, it ceases to be the norm. Therefore, obesity, overweight is, of course, not body positive. Some people confuse these concepts. It's just that completeness is wonderful, so let's celebrate our diversity while staying healthy. Users are always indignant. For some reason they were given the right to vote, and now they believe that they need to be indignant about any reason. This, apparently, is also already becoming the norm, because any material causes someone's indignation, let's already accept it."
In the opinion of the defenders of the February issue, the editors of the magazine just wanted to show that a woman of this weight can be happy. And it shouldn't be considered unhealthy just because of excess weight. Plus-size models on glossy covers are also supported by Alexander Tsypkin, writer and creator of the literary and theatrical project "Unprincipled Readings".
Alexander Tsypkin writer, creator of the literary and theatrical project “Unprincipled Readings” “I think it's great when plus-size models appear on the covers, it's great. For a huge number of men, they are very attractive. It is most important. It seems to me that there is even some discrimination in the fact that only skinny girls should be on the covers of magazines."
The support for the February cover is shattered by the concrete argument of the World Health Organization, which published yet another study on covid in October last year. It states that obesity (including in young people) significantly increases the risks of severe illness.
However, for the most glossy magazine, all this is not important, the editors did the main thing - they attracted attention to the discussion topic, marketers say. Cosmopolitan already published the cover of its most famous plus-size model, Tess Holliday, last fall. Then, too, there were violent disputes between "fat-shamers" and "skinny-shamers". That is, those who believe that “we need to eat less”, and those who answer them that “there is no beauty in a thin body”. And this is an eternal topic, says Igor Berezin, President of the Guild of Marketers, a certified expert in marketing research and market analysis.
Igor Berezin President of the Guild of Marketers, a certified expert in marketing research and market analysis “When something is ambiguous, when there are different opinions, a wave already begins. One such topic is the topic of excess weight. Where does sweet obesity end and severe obesity begin? Let's look at the Rubensian beauties, today, probably, many doctors would say that they need to go to the clinic already, because this can have a heavy effect on their health. Is it possible to allow too thin models to go on the catwalk or not - otherwise they set a bad example for girls all over the world, they stop eating? All steps are taken for one goal - to increase profitability, income from the publication. Hype, likes and so on - this is the goal of any media, and even more so a glossy magazine. To involve a large number of people - and then this audience can be sold to the advertiser."
Regarding advertisers: users of British social networks also have a version. They suggested that McDonald's became the general sponsor of the February issue.