I was walking through Fashion Fair mall last week and this mannequin stopped me in my tracks. Do you see what’s different about her? She actually has a little belly, a little pooch below her belly button. (You can click to enlarge the photo if you want.) It’s not much of one, sure, but it’s something you just don’t see on mannequins. Most of them have flat as a pancake stomachs — and look nothing like real people. But plenty of real people, even thin people, have and agonize over a little pooch like this. Hiding it with shapewear isn’t even a question for this gal. This was at Caché, the formal dress shop, by the way.
Then fellow Beehiver Traci Arbios mentioned the models in bikinis on the wall outside of the European Wax Center in River Park. Click on the jump to see the photo. The two on the left are beautiful — thin and with hourglass figures — but they don’t have the traditional wispy bodies of most models. There’s no vertical ab line and they have some rounded curves. Traci said she was stunned when she saw it.
So what’s going on here? Are companies finally acknowledging that not everyone looks like Kate Moss? And if the reaction among consumers is to stop in their tracks, feel a connection with the person and take a picture of it, isn’t that a marketing win? How about we add some plus-size mannequins to the mix? How about some short mannequins since the average American woman is 5’3″? How about instead of setting impossible standards for young people we start using mannequins that look like real people?