Debenhams to use non-airbrushed lingerie images
Debenhams has stopped using airbrushed photographs of models posing in its lingerie ranges as part of its commitment to promoting a positive body image amongst its customers.
The department store said that the use of some digital photography techniques to create unrealistic body shapes and flawless skin can make men and women feel more insecure about their natural looks and size.
It added: "We want to help customers feel confident about their figures without bombarding them with unattainable body images."
This is not the first time Debenhams has shown its commitment to promoting positive body image - the department store has run trials with size 16 mannequins in windows, worked with disabled models and paralympians.
Commenting on the move Sharon Webb, head of lingerie buying and design for Debenhams said: "As well as being a positive from a moral point of view, it ticks the economic boxes as well. Millions of pounds a year are spent by organisations retouching perfectly good images.
"As a rule we only airbrush minor things like pigmentation or stray hair and rely on the natural beauty of models to make our product look great."
Debenhams said that research by the YMCA found that 70% of women and 40% of men feel pressure from television and magazines to have a perfect body image.
Rosi Prescott, chief executive of Central YMCA explained: "Digital manipulation contributes to the unattainable "body ideal" portrayed in the majority of media and advertising.
"Millions of young people want to look like the pictures of models they see everywhere and the fact that 95% can't makes them feel bad about themselves."
Debenhams is now calling on other retailers to ban airbrushed images. "We want other retailers to follow suit and encourage positive body-image through minimal retouching rather than bombarding them with unattainable body images," said a spokesperson.
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