Home Fashion Top Shop forced to take down anorexic campaign.

Top Shop forced to take down anorexic campaign.

Cody Young
The new campaign.

In response to an avalanche of public dismay over their recent campaign (you can see the pictures here before they were pulled off and the main campaign image below) Top Shop, the UK fashion house has been forced to take down their recent campaign. Apparently the use of new up and coming model 18 year old Codie Young, who comes very close to a size zero so appalled consumer groups, as well various anti eating disorder groups, that the outlet was forced to use other images from the same photo shoot which reflects more of a healthier disposition. As healthy as a waif looking model can possibly get that is…

huffpo: The Mail first spotted the “painfully thin size-zero model” Codie Young on the store’s website last week, writing, “The pale young woman with a gaunt face is seen on the fashion stores homepage wearing tiny clothes that hang off her skeletal frame.”

At the time, Helen Davies from the British anorexia charity Beat told the newspaper, “This is not the sort of thing we want to see in magazines and on the internet. It’s a constant battle against eating disorders and Topshop is not helping matters. For girls who see these kind of images it can be very damaging.”

....and the old campaign.

Pale young woman with a skeletal frame? Should we really be surprised? With an industry rife with accusations of using gaunt girls as the face of their campaigns one has to wonder why the fashion industry keeps insisting on deploying the same tactics when time after time the public is caught wondering ; “Is this real? And how come I don’t look anything like this? But then again maybe this is what glamor is suppose to be, so let me buy the illusion anyway. Or not….”

But Top Shop quick to respond and save themselves from a possible public relations disaster had this to say:

Andrew Leahy, Topshop’s head of publicity, since reached out to the Mail, explaining, “Topshop is confident that Codie is a healthy young woman and we do not feel it necessary to remove her from our imagery based on your feature. However we do recognise regretfully that the angle this image has been shot at may accentuate Codie’s proportions making her head look bigger and neck longer in proportion to her body. […] The clothes she is wearing are a sample size 10 so in some instances they may look a little looser than normal.”

A little looser than normal? Does this make sense? To take a size zero model and have her wear size ten clothes? Is Mr Leahy having us on? Why not just take a size 10 girl and use her in the first place? Surely there are a lot of photogenic size 10 girls dotting the landscape. Or even a compromise- a size 4 girl? And what about the model herself?

Let’s see what Codie Young had to say? Taken from her blog:

I am very happy with my body and how I look because its apart of who I am! Throughout my entire childhood I was called anorexic and people would ask if I was bulimic. And it was really hard sometimes for me to deal with as I have always been this way. You know what some people are just naturally skinny and even if I tried to put on weight it wouldn’t matter, because it doesn’t matter what I eat, I dont put it on. […] size 34 or 18 but know one says anything to them because you



  1. It’s to draw attention to the fact that Top Shop who should know better orchestrated a campaign where they played up to thin themes. Cody may be healthy, but Top Shop by portraying this size 0 girl in size 10 clothes is playing at a game that needs to be drawn attention to. In essence they have cast this model to play role play a false pretense.

    The Editor.

  2. why do you still use the word anorexic in your headline if you accept that codie herself is not anorexic and that the misuse of the word anorexic is counterproductive? don’t you think that looks stupid and hypocritical?

  3. Models, fashion all that is meant to be fantasy NOT reality…is obesity not a worse problem in society…especially in America? models arent meant to be ‘role’ models…come on they rarely even speak publicly…these young girls should look else where…maybe even look up to… I dont know their own mothers perhaps?

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