Gucci Model in Ad Deemed ‘Unhealthily Thin’ by British Standard Authority

Gucci Ad
Model deemed "unhealthily thin" in Gucci ad by the ASA. Gucci

A model featured in Gucci's new ad has been deemed "unhealthily thin" by the Advertising Standards Authority of Britain, while the presentation itself was ripped as "irresponsible" by the regulator on Wednesday, April 6.

The model in question is Avery Blanchard, who leans against a wall in a long-sleeve printed Gucci frock and metallic loafers. According to the regulator, Blanchard was posing in a way that made her appear way too tiny.

"We considered that her torso and arms were quite slender and appeared to be out of proportion with her head and lower body," the ASA claimed. "Further, her pose elongated her torso and accentuated her waist so that it appeared to be very small."

Along with her form, the ASA said Blanchard's "[somber] facial expression and dark makeup, particularly around her eyes, made her face look gaunt." The ASA concluded, "For those reasons, we considered that the model leaning against the wall appeared to be unhealthily thin in the image, and therefore concluded that the ad was irresponsible."

The Italian fashion house, meanwhile, challenged the decision made by the ASA, and said that its advertisements were "aimed at an older, sophisticated audience." The ad first appeared in video form on the London Times' website in December 2015.

Gucci told the ASA that the readership of the British paper was "adult and mature" and hence, it was "a subjective issue as to whether a model looked unhealthily thin." Gucci asserted that the model had a slender physique, but was not represented in a way that was "unhealthily thin.” The Times also took Gucci's side, saying it was a subjective matter.

However, the ASA stood by its ruling and said that the image itself should not appear again.

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