With the revival of 2000s fashion, social media is bursting at the seams with low-rise jeans and Ed Hardy bags but under the butterfly clips and the Steve Madden shoes is something a little more sinister. The reappearance of ‘pro-ana’. (Trigger warning: mentions of disordered eating and anorexia).
Over the past few years, body types have been transformed into a fashion trend that you are praised and popularized for on social media. With fast-fashion websites such as Pretty Little Thing and Fashion Nova, the varying styles of fashion have been pushed onto women to a point where the clothing is no longer the selling point but rather the body it is being worn on.
Fatphobia and lack of representation have been a problem for decades, and the resurrection of pro-ana is something that is only making things worse. Pro-ana is a shortened term for pro-anorexia and involves the promotion of behaviors associated with disordered eating. The revival of Y2K appears fun and nostalgic when confronted with glittery boob tubes and Pamela Anderson-Esque hairstyles. Still, this fashion trend is only the corner of an overwhelmingly large picture. The glamorized desire for thinness and an unhealthy strive for ‘heroin-chic’.
‘Nothing Tastes As Good As Skinny Feels’
This glamorized mantra of disordered eating are the notorious words made famous by supermodel Kate Moss. Though she has recently expressed regret over this phrase latched onto by multiple pro-anorexia websites, the harm caused should be acknowledged. These words echoed around the heads of young girls who were unfortunate enough to come across such posts on sites such as Tumblr during its domination.
Searching through Twitter for responses to the years-old phrase was just as shocking as you would imagine it to be with the promotion of eating disorders at every touch of a fingertip. The glorification of anorexia has even bred its own side to Twitter, with numerous accounts hashtagging and spreading ‘tips’ on how not to feel hungry, labeling it ‘meanspo’, a term that is all too eerily familiar to gossip magazines and too harmful to include images of.
The Influence of The Kardashians
Being such a famous family, The Kardashians are photographed every time they move. Their association with the ‘BBL’ (Brazilian ButtLift) figure and the recent release of Kim’s ‘Skims’ line reiterates the heavy focus revolving around their bodies. The family is no stranger to controversy, especially in relation to pro-ana, as Kim and Khloe have both faced lawsuits and social media backlash for their promotion of diet pills and appetite-suppressing lollipops. Though they are famed for their curvaceous figures, recent pictures have been shared across social media deeming their bodies to have ‘changed’ and to be ‘smaller’ and more in line with the current thinness obsession. This changing body ‘ideal’ that is being thrown around social media is seriously harmful to the mental health of young girls, and it is irresponsible to spread false ‘diet plans’ and ‘workout routines’ when in the majority of cases, it is the work of surgery.
Your Body Is Not A Fashion Statement
The promotion of particular body types denotes that some are better than others. In the age of social media, young girls are seeing and interacting with false and dangerous narratives. The takeover of the Kardashians is the modern-day equivalent of Kate Moss’ mantra dominating magazines in the 2000s. According to figures provided by the NHS, 25% of admissions to UK hospitals for eating disorders in 2018/19 were for children who were under the age of 18. Disordered eating is only pushed further when influencers and celebrities with large followings are using their platform to promote their harmful narrative.
A body type isn’t a trend, and these figures will only continue to rise by making it such.