H&M CEO wants to use more curvy, plus-size models - FOX 35 News Orlando

H&M CEO wants to use more curvy, plus-size models to advertise clothes

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CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -

Thin may be in, but the CEO of major retailer H&M said it's time for change. Karl-Johan Persson said the models wearing his clothes should look more like their shoppers.

The H&M chief said he wants his pretty girls on the runway to be a little plump.

Skinny and underfed faces: They walk the walk. While they're strutting their stuff, they're selling the clothes we all love to buy.

"We all are trying to emulate those people, those mannequins," shopper Brian Mercado said. "It's not possible for a day to day look, day to day people it's not going to work out. It's not realistic at all."

That's why the CEO of one of the world's largest clothing stores said it's time for an update on the runway.

"Some of our models have been too skinny," Persson said. "That's not OK."

The CEO said his company has a huge responsibility and he wants to "show diversity in our advertising and not give people the impression that girls have to look a particular way."

Critics and parents have been complaining about the emaciated looking models on the runway for decades, fearing what the so-called "model look" can do to their daughters' self-esteem and confidence.

"I've gone through starvation diets, sometimes to try to lose weight and look like those mannequins," model Genisis Villarreal said. "But I've learned to accept myself. I do modeling now. But I just think it's amazing he did that. You know, every woman is beautiful."

"Do you hear your daughters talk about their bodies, trying to compare themselves to runway models? What do you hear them say? ‘I'm fat - I'm so fat and everybody thinks I'm fat," Tammy Loxmiller said. "It just breaks my heart, it does."

Those hearts may soon heal. H&M is already using curvier and plus size models in their swim suit ads. One expert told FOX 32 News that if the trend catches on, this could be something big.

"It could be an enormous boost to the self-esteem and disturbing self-image that the younger girls and older women have," licensed social worker Bernadette Gaffney said. "The younger girls take their cue from the older ones."

When FOX 32 looked up the definition of "plus-size," the definition said sizes 12 and up.

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