We are all fully aware of social media’s exponential impact on society; however, no one could predict the impact it would have on fashion. Not only have fashion shows changed according to social media standards, but the modeling industry is changing as well. The fashion industry is lacking “real” women models, so Instagram has kindly given them to us. These models are no longer just a pretty face in a magazine, they are strong women setting a new industry standard who so many young girls will look up to.
Social Media Changes
Fashion is becoming more and more technologically dependent, as fashion bloggers and ‘Instagram influencers’ are becoming the trendsetters. Mintel, a large researching firm, found that 35 percent of women buy clothing as influenced by social media. Mintel also found that by 2019, online sales from a mobile device will rise 77 percent.
Those behind the influences changing the retail world are the band of bloggers and social media influencers. Replacing editors of magazines and photographers, these people are placed in the front seat of shows to gain a following. According to The Huffington Post, Chiara Ferragni, fashion blogger turned entrepreneur, earns an upwards of $8 million a year and has access to fashion shows worldwide.
Of course, not everyone can be as successful as she is now that the Instagram world is swamped with influencers. However, her personal style and clothing choices are ones that nearly 7.5 million people follow and are influenced by everyday.
Whether you follow them or not, everyone has passed by an Instagram model in a bikini on their explore page. People like Alexis Ren, Frida Aasaen and Natasha Oakley are no longer just a pretty face in a photograph; they are starting collaborations with athletic companies, bikini brands and makeup brands to raise brand awareness with younger generations.
But the world has evolved past the “perfect” Instagram models, and now people want something real. Yahoo Styles interviewed Karina Irby regarding a photoshop post she made that debunked the allure of many Instagram models. Her edit included the removal of her cellulite and stretch marks, trimming her stomach, thighs and arms and smoothing out her skin to achieve the “Insta-Girl” look.
While every “Insta-Girl” isn’t the same, people have a growing respect for the ones who have always been real, like Iskra Lawrence, Jordyn Woods and Barbie Ferreria. Recently, these models have begun to dominate the field. The unedited, unfiltered Aerie Campaign? Oh yeah, Iskra Lawrence is the face and inspiration behind it. Insta-models like these ladies are one of the reasons that #ImNoAngel and #PlusIsEqual have inspired so many brands to add normal sized women into their campaigns. Meredith Rollins of Redbook told AdWeek that more than 50 percent of women in the United States are larger than size 14, meaning that in many cases, 50 percent of the population is being looked past.
As the social world is changing, so is what people are wanting to see and buy. The fashion blogger has one of the biggest impacts on the fashion industry because they not only influence what we buy, but influence designers as to what they should create.
Instagram models are no longer “perfect” because consumers are seeking a woman they can relate to and feel good about themselves when they look at them. As Instagram and other platforms evolve, the hope is that body positivity will be maintained and there will be less of an importance placed on the “Insta-Girl” look.