Is the Most Fashion Forward Magazine Falling Behind?

Vogue is the most popular magazine in the world and is, more importantly, the most fashion forward. Anna Wintour, the editor in chief of Vogue, states herself that fashion is about moving forward and not looking back which is why I’m wondering why the magazine seems to be behind today’s culture. Not only is the magazine as a whole a bit behind but the most important part of it, the cover, is behind too.

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It’s a bit odd to me that a magazine and magazine editor who pride themselves on being up to date with the latest in fashion and culture seem to be behind on culture. Anna Wintour made a bold move when she decided to feature celebrities on the cover of Vogue instead of regular models that no one has ever heard of. Anna continued to be bold in 1974 when she featured the first black model on the cover of American Vogue. So I wonder why, when culture has moved forward, the cover of Vogue remains predominantly white? Which also prompted me to ask the next question. Is Anna Wintour racist?

Absolutely not. If Anna was racist, she wouldn’t feature people like Beyoncé on the cover of the September issue. She also wouldn’t be as close to people like Kanye West of she was either or make videos like 73 Questions With Lupita Nyong’o before putting her on the cover of this year’s October issue. Anna regularly features black models on the cover of Vogue but I’ve noticed that the cover is still dominated by white celebrities and white models.

That, however, is only a consequence of a cultural issue in which white models still dominate the fashion industry. There are less black models and celebrities on the cover of Vogue because there are less of them than there are of their white counterparts. Just take a look at New York Fashion Week. According to The Fashion Spot, New York Fashion Week is still more than 70% white. Then, we have things like this seasons Valentino fashion show which used mostly white models for it’s African themed Spring/Summer 2016 collection. There were literally less than 10 black models who wore outfits out of the 90 or so in that show.

As much of an obvious middle finger that is to diversity and the forward movement of culture, Vogue represents where fashion currently stands. So it’s no surprise that if fashion’s most important event as well as the industry is mostly white, the magazine who represents that industry will be mostly white. The only issue is that Anna Wintour is one of the most powerful people on the fashion industry and can even make designers of luxury brands design clothes based on her criticism. She can use that power to push the industry forward but I haven’t seen much effort from her.

Additionally, the industry hasn’t done a good job with diversity when it comes to plus-sized models either. For example, Karl Legerdeld’s 2012 comments about Adele and how “no one wants to see curvy women on the runway” a year later. Vogue also hasn’t helped either. This year’s Spetember issue featured a two-page spread with plus-size models that read “plus is equal”, however, that was only for an advertisement and there were not plus-size models in any other pages of the magazine. Vogue has also never had a plus-size model on its cover either. Yet another thing about the industry that Anna Wintour has the power to help with.

At first I thought that the magazine was the problem but the problem is in the indusrty that the magazine represents. The most popular and fashion forward magazine in the world is behind because the industry it represents is behind. I just think that Anna Wintour could be making more of an effort to help that.

So, what do you think? Should Anna Wintour be putting more effort into moving the fashion industry forward or is Vogue fine as it is? Let me know in the comments below. Also, don’t forget to subscribe to get new posts sent directly to your inbox and follow me on Facebook, Snapchat, and Instagram.


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