Everyone's favorite topless protesters, those Ukrainian girls from feminist group Femen, were at it again this week, this time demonstrating outside the Versace fashion show in Milan wearing only jeans and flowers in their hair, as they decried the use of anorexic models with signs ("Fashion = Fascism"), chants, and body-painted messages. The three Femen protesters are apprently models, and the very gimmick used to draw attention to the worrisome subject ends up as a counterproductive distraction for mesmerized oglers probably thinking, "Yeah, yeah, eat more, whatever, just show me more boobs."
Since their founding in 2008, Femen's defiance-work has covered a wide spectrum of topics, but has mainly been focused on feminism- and sex-related issues. Their Milan protest against anorexia and the use of size-zero models on runways happened to take place just days before the start of America's National Eating Disorder Awareness Week.
Twiggy, the popular English model from the '60s, probably had a lot to do with the alarming trend of ever-thinner models being called for that we see today. (If her nickname had been "Bloaty," we probably wouldn't have arrived at this pass.) Following New York Fashion week, the Council of Fashion Designers of America addressed the problem of anorexia in fashion by establishing new guidelines which seek to protect the health of runway models. These include encouraging models who may suffer from eating disorders to search out professional help, as well as providing healthy backstage snacks and drinks at fashion shows. The ladies of Femen have much important work ahead of them. Let's just hope they don't catch cold.