Embargo: 00:00, 17 April 2012
Contact: Corrine Leon 020 7219 8088
In a looks-obsessed society where 47% of girls think the pressure to look attractive is the most negative part of being female[i] and 38% of men would sacrifice at least a year of their life in exchange for a perfect body.[iii]
It is time to recognise the power of media, individuals and corporations to promote better body confidence for all.
The APPG on Body Image is delighted to announce the UK’s first Body Confidence Awards presented in association with bareMinerals.
Mounted by the APPG and with the support of the Campaign for Body Confidence founded in 2009, the ceremony will be held on 19 April 2012 at 7:30 PM at the House of Commons. The Awards will recognise and celebrate the achievements and best practice of those who promote body confidence within various industries.
A judging panel made up of representatives from B-eat, the Centre for Appearance Research, All Walks Beyond the Catwalk, AnyBody, Stephanie Heart Enterprises, Mumsnet, and the Central YMCA along with Jo Swinson MP sifted through countless nominations to come up with the shortlists.
The nominees were chosen for a number of reasons including aspirational diversity in size, age and skin tone; responsible use of body imagery and the consideration of diverse body sizes, shapes and beauty; promotion of active and healthy lifestyles and less sexualised imagery.
Commenting on his nomination fashion designer Giles Deacon said:
“I am thrilled to be nominated for a Body Confidence award. Since launching my eponymous label in 2003 I have worked with a wide range of ages and body types and a particular highlight for me was working with Verushka who modelled in my in Spring Summer 2011 collection closing the runway show age 73. I like to work with this wide range of women as body confidence and character pervade.”
Commenting on his nomination fashion designer Mark Fast said:
“Over the years I have been privileged to work with some of the most beautiful and shapely women in the world and it is true to say that even the most beautiful (by any standards) have moments of doubt and insecurities. I want to celebrate women and make them feel good in my clothes”.
Commenting Susie Orbach from AnyBody said:
“It influences us all and affects the well-being of young women and men so it is important to acknowledge examples which promote body confidence and counteract the damage. Advertisers and marketers can be so imaginative. These are examples of the direction to aim in.”
Commenting Jo Swinson MP for East Dunbartonshire said:
“With these awards we want to publicly recognise positive steps taken by industry groups, businesses and campaigners. In highlighting their leading work and body confidence initiatives hopefully they will inspire others to follow in their footsteps.”
Commenting Caryn Franklin Fashion Commentator and Co-Founder of All Walks Beyond the Catwalk said:
“Fashion design can be a huge force for good when individuality and diversity are celebrated. At All Walks, we love fashion for all ages, sizes and skin tones.”
The nominees are:
Central YMCA Health, Sport and Fitness Award
All Walks Beyond the Catwalk Fashion Award
Mumsnet Award for promoting body confidence in children
Celebrity Ambassador of the Year Award
Decided by public votes. To be announced at the ceremony
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Notes to editors
Interviews with the following campaign members by request or through individual organisations. See links below:
- The Campaign for Body Confidence co-founded by Lynne Featherstone MP, now Government Minister for Equalities, and Jo Swinson MP brings together a range of organisations including: B-Eat, All Walks Beyond the Catwalk, Mumsnet, Central YMCA , Anybody, Stephanie Heart Enterprise and the Centre for Appearance Research.
- Award-winning fashion initiative All Walks Beyond the Catwalk promotes a broader range of body and beauty ideals in collaboration with designers, professional models and education professionals. The All Walks nationwide lectures and Centre of Diversity in Edinburgh explore emotionally considerate design for all.
- AnyBody is a non-profit organisation encouraging a change in cultural attitudes towards bodies, food and eating so that women and children of the next generation can learn to be happy in and look after their bodies.
- B-eat is a leading UK charity for people with eating disorders and their families.
- The Centre for Appearance Research is an academic research centre at the University of West England which focuses on appearance-related concerns.
- Central YMCA is a health charity using advocacy and education to change attitudes toward health, including body image.
- Mumsnet is now the UK’s busiest social network for parents, generating over 38 million page views per month and nearly 5 million visits per month.
- Stephanie Heart of SH Enterprises inspires and challenges young women through interactive seminars
- All Party Parliamentary Group on Body Image
This cross-party forum brings together MPs who are interested in what can be done to promote more positive body image, particularly for children and young people. The group is currently conducting a Parliamentary Inquiry into the causes and consequences of body image anxiety in UK society. The office bearers are Jo Swinson MP (Lib Dem), Mary Glindon MP (Labour), Caroline Nokes MP (Conservative) and Stephen Williams MP (Lib Dem).The Central YMCA provides the secretariat to this group. The APPG will be publishing a report of its findings in June www.ymca.co.uk/bodyconfidence/parliament
- In their most recent campaign “Force of Beauty”, bareMinerals decided to eschew models that represented the elusive notion of beauty, and instead held a blind casting call for women ages 20 to 60. They did not see the women who applied until they were selected for the campaign. Instead, they asked more than 270 women to complete a questionnaire about who they were and what they were like. The company was looking for women who embodied qualities like inspiration, humility and humour. The goal was to capture women who had compelling and interesting stories to tell. With the exception of basic colour correction, the company took pains not to retouch or airbrush photographs of the women, leaving in everything that they came with on their face. They are firm believers that they have a responsibility as a beauty company to start changing the images that women see.
- Photo credit: Kirsten McLennan wears Alice Temperley for All Walks Beyond the Catwalk shot by Rankin Caption: All Walks Beyond the Catwalk promote broader body and beauty ideals in their campaigns.