• Germany's news in English
 
app_header_v3

Fashion magazine 'Brigitte' goes model-free

Kristen Allen · 5 Oct 2009, 17:49

Published: 05 Oct 2009 17:49 GMT+02:00

Instead, the Hamburg-based title published by Gruner+Jahr plans to choose from readers who register online and staff members based on their meaningful qualities other than their dress size.

“Attractiveness has many faces,” editor of the bi-monthly Brigitte Huber said in a statement. “Whether they are actresses, musicians, first ladies or women on the streets of big cities – they all affect fashion and beauty styles.”

The new concept, which Brigitte called “radical,” will start next year and is a response to two different trends, co-editor Andreas Lebert said in the statement.

“Behind the career of a model lies the idea of not showing women themselves, but instead a place holder – a model of a certain size. Now many women find this outdated, especially the beauty ideals, also moulded by the fashion industry, that are highly controversial,” he said, adding that women would prefer to take part in the project.

Dr. Lisa Pecho, a Munich-based psychotherapist and spokesperson for the BFE national professional association for eating disorder treatment experts, told The Local that the Brigitte’s new aesthetic is an important step towards changing unrealistic body images.

“I think it’s fantastic what they’re doing,” she said. “It will serve as a big example.”

According to Pecho, eating disorder experts have recently seen a spike in middle-aged patients trying to maintain weight goals that are a stretch even for women half their age.

And because many of Brigitte’s readers are professional women “in the middle of life,” as the magazine describes them, a healthier ideal for them will also be passed on to their daughters, Pecho said.

“This magazine has a huge influence in Germany,” Pecho said. “There are many factors that create eating disorders, but the media is certainly a big one.”

Brigitte, founded in 1954, reports a readership of 3.21 million. According to news agency DDP, the magazine has recently been struggling to maintain readership and may be attempting to ignite interest with the new campaign.

The women who will now be featured in the magazine will receive a similar payment to what Brigitte has paid models.

Story continues below…

While there have been movements to create a minimum body mass index for models to discourage eating disorders in the UK and last year ahead of Berlin’s summer fashion week, editor Lebert said he doubted the magazine’s decision would revolutionise unrealistic body images in the industry.

But Pecho said Brigitte's initiative, as well as those like Dove's recent ad campaign featuring normal women in the buff, are a step in the right direction to "stir up" damaging trends.

According to DDP, some 600,000 people between 15 and 35 years of age in Germany suffer from anorexia or bulimia. According to research carried out by the Robert Koch Institute, about 22 percent of young people between the ages of 11 and 17 have some kind of eating disorder. Among 17-year-old girls, the number is 30 percent. One in ten people suffering from anorexia dies from the disorder.

Related links:

Kristen Allen (kristen.allen@thelocal.de)

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Travellers stuck after dozy train driver forgets Freiburg
Photo: DPA

It's one thing to miss a train - it's another when the train misses you.

Berlin airport employee admits taking €150,000 bribe
Berlin Brandenburg Airport. Photo: DPA

The German capital's long-delayed international airport has been haunted by claims of corruption and incompetency.

Teachers' union: school burqa bans only isolate girls more
Women wearing niqabs. Photo: DPA.

A German trade union for teachers has warned of the consequences of banning certain religious attire in schools after a teen this week was told she could not wear a face veil to school.

Bundesliga
Bayern ban big bags and bottles for Bundesliga opener
Photo: DPA

Bayern Munich have tightened security measures at their stadium, banning spectators from carrying big bags and bottles, ahead of Friday's home match - the first of the new German league season.

Drugstore chain DM starts selling pepper spray
Photo: DPA

One of Germany's largest drug stores has started selling pepper spray due to "increased requests" from customers.

AfD accused of using neo-Nazi symbols on campaign car
Photo: Facebook of NO LEGIDA.

The Leipzig branch of the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) party has come under fire for seemingly using Nazi symbols on a campaign car.

Merkel wants migrant return deals with N. African states
Migrants in the Mediterranean. Photo: DPA

German Chancellor Angela Merkel called Tuesday on the EU and North African countries to do deals modelled on a controversial agreement with Turkey to stem migrant flows to Europe.

VW reaches supplier deal to resume production
Photo: DPA

German car giant Volkswagen said on Tuesday it has reached a deal with suppliers to begin deliveries again after a stoppage that forced the group to halt production at several plants.

Merkel calls for 'loyalty' from Turkish-Germans
Chancellor Angela Merkel. Photo: EPA.

Those who have lived in Germany for many years should actively show a "high level of loyalty", the Chancellor said.

Govt paper mulls bringing back army conscription
Photo: DPA

In its new concept paper on civil defence, the federal government discusses the concept of conscription, five years after it was abolished.

Sponsored Article
Why you should attend an international job fair
Gallery
Germany's 17 Olympic gold medals in pictures
Sponsored Article
Why expats choose international health insurance
Culture
7 American habits that make Germans very, very uncomfortable
Rhineland
Story of a fugitive cow who outwitted police for weeks before capture
Sponsored Article
Why you should attend an international job fair
Culture
Eleven famous Germans with surnames that'll make your sides split
Sponsored Article
Life in Jordan: 'Undiscovered treasure'
Lifestyle
The best ways to get a visa as an American in Germany
14 facts you never knew about the Brandenburg Gate
Society
Ten times Germans proved they really, really love beer
Sponsored Article
Why Jordan is the ‘Different’ East
Lifestyle
What's on in Germany: events for August 2016
Sponsored Article
Five things Americans should know about voting abroad
National
Six things you need to know when moving to Germany
Travel
These 10 little-known German towns are a must see
Sponsored Article
Jordan Pass: your ticket to the experience of a lifetime
International
German scientists prove birds can sleep while flying
Sponsored Article
Jordan: where history meets adventure
Technology
London v. Berlin: Which is better for startups?
Lifestyle
13 mortifying mistakes German learners always make
Sponsored Article
6 reasons expats use TransferWise to send money
Travel
Enter if you dare: Berlin's best abandoned haunts
Sponsored Article
Why you should attend an international job fair
Lifestyle
10 rookie errors all Brits make when they arrive in Germany
Sponsored Article
Five things Americans should know about voting abroad
National
How to get German citizenship (or just stay forever)
Sponsored Article
Jordan: where history meets adventure
Technology
Brexit will turn Berlin into 'Europe’s startup capital'
Sponsored Article
6 reasons expats use TransferWise to send money
Travel
Six soothing day trips to escape the bustle of Berlin
International
'Germany needs to make UK come to its senses'
Features
Six odd things Germans do in the summer
Features
How two gay dads cut through German red tape to start a family
8,582
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd