Zoe Saldana weight – why oh why is it on the cover of Allure magazine’s June cover?
Every time we seem to be making progress in the way women are portrayed in magazines, somehow we take a step back.
The latest reminder that we still have a ways to go is that Allure magazine’s latest cover, featuring gorgeous actress Zoe Saldana, describes its cover model as “115 Pounds of Grit and Heartache.”
While that may be true, readers probably didn’t need to know precisely how much “grit and heartache” she possesses.
It’s not clear if or how the number fits into the piece since the full interview with the actress has yet to be released but when omg! inquired about the headline, Saldana’s rep referred omg! to Allure, who in turn said “no comment.”
Whomever is responsible, the decision to showcase Saldana’s digits seems so … unnecessary.
Hilary Levey Friedman, a Harvard sociologist who often writes and speaks about images in the media, calls it “an interesting choice,” particularly because many of today’s women focus on Body Mass Index rather than the numbers on the scale.
The message to women on the Allure cover, she says, is that “you need to be thin and strong. Just one isn’t enough anymore. This only puts more demands on women and can lead to varied types of disordered eating.”
Friedman adds that the headline harks back to another era.
“It used to be common to share numbers like weight and measurements,” she continues. “While it is still common within the modeling industry … more mainstream pop culture has shied away from it. Even the Miss America Pageant stopped listing the weights and measurements of its competitors by the 1990s.”
Not long ago, it seemed possible that readers of women’s glossies would see a change.