Clear, glowing skin may be the beauty look du jour but, thankfully, for those of us not blessed with a flawless face, there is also a body-positive skin movement currently gaining traction online. Let's call it "skin positivity".
The trend towards accepting common skin conditions, such as scarring, acne, psoriasis and rosacea, is growing and encouraging people to love themselves as they are (#NoFilter), and now Missguided is helping to further the cause.
The high-street fashion retailer's new campaign, #InYourOwnSkin, which launches today, celebrates "what the industry perceives as 'flaws' and 'imperfections' that make us who we are". It features six women with scarring, birthmarks, freckles, tattoos, albinism and skin conditions looking happy and comfortable in their own skin despite the fashion and beauty industries' unachievable ideals.
There's Isabella (above), a student who caught her shirt in a house fire when she was 17 and has scarring across her right arm and back as a result, and hopes to normalise disabilities and disfigurements through modelling.
There's Beth (above), a student with psoriasis who was cast by the brand when they spotted her on the street in Manchester and is making her modelling debut in the campaign; and Mariana (above), a Brazilian model and fashion designer, born with a large birthmark on her face, who advocates body positivity on social media.
There's Maya (below), who has the rare condition epidermolysis bullosa (EB), which affects 5,000 people in the UK and just 500,000 people worldwide.
There’s also Joanne (below), a plus-size model with albinism, who works to raise awareness of the disorder; and lastly, Polly (below), a red-haired model with freckles across her face and both tattoos and freckles on her body.
This isn't the first time Missguided has advocated body positivity or even skin positivity. In February, it was roundly celebrated for using mannequins with natural body features, including stretch marks and vitiligo, and which represented a range of ethnic backgrounds.
The brand's #MakeYourMark campaign last year, which featured completely unretouched images, was also widely celebrated for encouraging women to embrace their "flaws" and reject what "the world perceives as perfection". Before that, it was lauded for shunning airbrushing in its images of swimwear models.
While the ethics of fast fashion are opaque, and concerns have been raised about the brand not making many of its clothes beyond a UK women's size 16, it's great to see women with diverse body and skin types celebrated in its campaign. Let's hope other retailers follow suit.
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