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Call it a sponsored content bonanza. Glamour announced on Wednesday that it has entered into a multi-pronged partnership with Lane Bryant laser focused on courting the plus-size market and promoting a message of body positivity. The project includes two special editions of Glamour, one on newsstands now and the second to come in the fall, along with a three-part video series called "How To Wear Everything You've Been Told Not To," and a Glamour x Lane Bryant clothing collection that will drop in October.
The first two videos, starring models Iskra Lawrence and Precious Lee, went live on Glamour.com earlier this month. The cover of the first magazine, titled "Chic at Any Size!" (shoutout to Harper's Bazaar's "Fabulous at Every Age" franchise), features current Maxim cover star Ashley Graham. It happens to be an old photo of her, but she does look beautiful regardless.
Like many women's magazines, Glamour doesn't have a perfect history of highlighting women of all sizes in its pages and catering to a diversity of shapes in its market stories; in the first few issues of 2016, images of über-lean models, actresses, and 'real life women' continued to dominate its pages. So, as a few Racked editors pointed out in the office this morning, the sudden interest in size inclusiveness — motivated by what's no doubt a very lucrative sponsorship deal — can read as insincere. But then, does it matter, when plus-size models are landing prominent gigs in a major magazine and the conversation around size acceptance is getting attention?
With luck, that sentiment won't remain confined to two "special interest publications." In Glamour's April issue, Cindi Leive focused her editor's letter on what she sees as an expanding definition of beauty, and included a feature on plus-size shopping. More of that, please — not just when the sales team demands it.