LONDON A group of men staged a protest outside the launch of men’s fashion week in London on Thursday to call for greater body diversity in the fashion industry.
Campaigners Jack Eyers, Jamie Park, William Girling, Andy Caine, Gordon McCormick and Paul Gill staged the #FashionForEveryManprotest which was organised by plus-size menswear retailer Jacamo to encourage greater diversity in model shapes, sizes and abilities in menswear.
Jack Eyers one of the protesters said that the absence of fashion icons that look like him has made him feel singled out.
“As an amputee, growing up there was a lack of fashion icons that looked like me and nobody that I could relate to,” Jack Eyers said in a statement emailed to Mashable.
“This made me feel singled-out and alone, as I was not represented. My ambition is to change this so that people and particularly young people growing up feel represented in the fashion industry,” Eyers continued.
The protesters were all finalists in the retailer’s Real Man Runway 2016 competition to find an “everyday” male model. The campaigners wielded placards emblazoned with statements about male body image outside London Fashion Week Mens’ main venue on the Strand.
While the subject of women’s body image has become increasingly discussed in recent years, research has highlighted that men also feel pressure when it comes to their physical appearance. A 2014 study found that almost 20 percent of adolescent boys are highly concerned about their weight and physique.
Ed Watson, a spokesperson for Jacamo, said the retailer wants all men to feel more represented on the high street in order to alleviate concerns about body image.
“Theres no denying the models here at Mens Fashion Week look great, but theyre not always representative of UK men and were here to make that known,” said Watson.
“We believe that fashion should be for every man, without any barriers, and thats why we aim to widen the net of models used,” Watson continued.