Following a new law that passed on Saturday, super thin models are now illegal in France.
Starting this October, models in France will have to pass a medical exam that ensures that their Body Mass Index does not promote the stereotype of ultra-thin women. In addition, pictures that have been “retouched” for thinness must be labeled, to make they do not represent real bodies.
Moreover, it will be illegal to shoot pictures with models that have a height/weight BMI below 18.5.
The move against skinny models is seen as a larger fight against anorexia, a social and public health epidemic that counts 40,000 victims in France. Anorexia has become the second most common cause of death for the 15-24 following car accidents. Over 600,000 people are suffering from an eating disorder in France.
According to the Ministry of Health, the idea is to avoid “unattainable ideas of beauty” and “protect the health of models.” Employers employing thinner models will be liable to pay a €75,000 fine.
France is the fourth country to take similar policy measures after Spain, Israel, and Italy. The Franch law is the most rigid.