kiki willems’ saint laurent ad banned in the uk

The image was considered irresponsible because the model appears to be unhealthily underweight according to the ASA.

by Charlotte Gush
03 June 2015, 12:29pm

Hedi Slimane's Saint Laurent has become the latest high fashion brand to have a campaign image banned in the UK, after a public complaint that model Kiki Willems looks too thin was upheld by the Advertising Standards Agency (ASA).

"The ASA considered that the model's pose and the particular lighting effect in the ad drew particular focus to the model's chest, where her rib cage was visible and appeared prominent, and to her legs, where her thighs and knees appeared a similar width, and which looked very thin, particularly in light of her positioning and the contrast between the narrowness of her legs and her platform shoes."

Whether or not Kiki is unhealthily thin is not at issue; it's the fact that she appears to be, and could promote unhealthy body 'ideals'. The ASA added that, "We therefore considered that the model appeared unhealthily underweight in the image and concluded that the ad was irresponsible."

The ban of the Saint Laurent image for appearing to show a too-thin model follows the ban last month of a Miu Miu image for appearing to show a sexualized portrait of a too-young model (model Mia Goth is in fact 22). It seems the public are increasingly aware that it they believe an image to be irresponsible, no matter how ubiquitous its style may be in high fashion, they have a voice, and with the backing of Advertising Standards, the power to enact change.

Saint Laurent
kiki willems