Style & Then Some

Alexa Chung’s ‘thinstagram’ controversy

I swear, Instagram has never had so much publicity as its had in the last week.  The photo-sharing app for mobiles (in case you’ve been living under a rock) has not only been acquired by Facebook’s greedy Zuckerberg  for a rumoured $1 billion, but it also appears to have got MTV presenter Alexa Chung embroiled in yet another ‘weight debate’.  When Chung posted a snap of herself on her Instagram account wearing a denim dress, shades and trademark ballet flats the ex-model was inundated with negative comments about her tiny frame.  After commenting on the photo that she wasn’t ‘trying to be thinspo for anyone’ she then made her account private, and is now dealing with the Instagram fall out in the press.

Alexa Chung Alexa Chung style Alexa Chung thinspo Alexa Chung Instagram row 2012 Alexa Chung instagram

Having  only joined Instagram a few weeks ago (insert shameless self promotion here: @helencoakley, Chung was actually one of the first ‘shlebs’ I followed.  Now, I know she can be considered Marmite, but I genuinely admire her sense of style and from the few images I managed to see on her account, it was rather nice having a direct window in to her wardrobe!  But no.  Haters gotta hate, haven’t they?  And now my fabulous pocket inspiration in the form of Chung is set to private.  So unless I befriend her sharpish that’s game over for us.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying this photo didn’t have the shock factor.  Alexa’s legs do look very thin, but at the end of the day, and to my dying day, I will not understand people’s obsession with abusing celebrities because of their weight.  I admire the way she styles herself and don’t judge her on her on the aforementioned issues.  And what is even the point in following someone you are just gagging to abuse on a social network?  Let’s have a social media cleanse people.  Anyone nowadays in the public eye is automatically considered a ‘role model’ whether they like it or not, and unfortunately they cannot post a tweet or a picture without over-analysis and hoards of abuse.  Everyone has a photo or a tweet they aren’t proud of, but unlike us, celebs can’t get away with quickly hitting the delete button and hoping nobody saw.  Now defending Alexa’s weight isn’t my point here.  But I would like to point out through all the abuse she has received over this one picture and being accused of said ‘thinspo’ she is one of the few celebrities who isn’t posting half scantily-clad twitpics and dressing like a stripper.  Swings and roundabouts people. Actress Ashley Judd recently wrote an incredibly eloquent and accurate essay for the Daily Beast about just this subject, the objectification of women in the media, when she was criticised  in the press not for being too skinny but for her ‘puffy face’. If you find yourself drawn to the side bar of shame on the Daily Mail more than you’d like, it’s highly recommended reading.

Now I know some of this may provoke different opinions, and I would love to hear your thoughts, as ever, so please do feel free to pipe up…although any thoroughly negative comments may result in this article being deleted.  Method acting and all that…


About Helen Coakley

2 comments on “Alexa Chung’s ‘thinstagram’ controversy

  1. Sophie Caldecott
    April 19, 2012

    I, for one, couldn’t agree more, Helen! The level of obsession over weight issues is unhealthy and intrusive.

  2. Helen Coakley
    April 20, 2012

    Thanks Soph!

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