Welcome to our column, "Hey, Quick Question," where we investigate seemingly random happenings in the fashion and beauty industries. Enjoy!
For an app that seems to have the singular purpose of making its users feel as inadequate as possible, Instagram sure has been giving me some unexpected emotions as of late. It's been the source of confusion, disbelief and, above all, concern — concern for all of the influencer fashion bros who just can't figure out how to stand up straight.
Not all fashion bros are clueless when it comes to posture, of course. The flamboyantly suited "peacocks" of Pitti Uomo and the "#menswear" era knew a thing or two about standing tall and holding their shoulders back. Perhaps they were of a different, more genetically gifted breed, but I'd pin it on their ultra-slim suits. I wouldn't slouch either if there was a risk of tearing the seams of my bespoke Super 160's Italian wool suit. Whatever that means.
Italians in tiny suits aside, the history of fashion is in many ways a history of people having absolutely no clue about the basics of proper posture. Remember Demna Gvasalia's lookbook for the Vetements Spring 2018 collection? It was notable for many reasons: the aggressively post-normcore clothes worn by aggressively normal people who were street cast and photographed by Gvasalia himself, as well as for the batshit crazy poses he recommended they stand in.
In Vogue's review of the collection, Sarah Mower wrote: "Still, the project is clearly aimed at poking fun at the conventions and pretensions of fashion. Gvasalia showed people a book of images of fashion poses 'and then we asked them to do their version of them.'" Say what you will about Gvasalia's many-layered ironic approach to fashion, but he has a point here: most of these poses look goofy as hell.
Maybe there is a precedent here, but in the case of our orthopedically challenged faves, a question remains: These are people who presumably make a living off their appearances, so why can't they just stand up straight?
To be fair to Callum Mullin, who is pictured below, maybe his subpar posture is an optical illusion created by his long sleeves and asymmetric buttons.
Look at the size of this lad, A$AP Nast, in his Napa by Martine Rose jacket. Absolute unit. Although, it's hard to blame him for his posture here because a jacket that hefty must be significantly weighing him down.
It's hard to say, given the conveniently cropped nature of the photo below, but perhaps Jordan Vickors had just spotted something interesting on the ground in front of him. Maybe a friend dropped his wallet or he saw, like, a really cool looking bug.
Could it be "text neck"? Given that the average human head weighs 10 to 12 pounds, according to the New York Times, looking down at your phone "leads to incremental loss of the curve of the cervical spine." I'm sure Luca Fersko, pictured below, loves scrolling his Instagram feed as much as the rest of us, so let's hope his cervical spine is in good shape.
Even Anwar Hadid has his moments, though this particular contortion seems to be at the service of the perfect mirror selfie angle. His runway model sisters should teach him a thing or two about posture if they know what's good for their little bro.
Even more concerning is the fact that these influencers are young — and only getting younger. While this might mean that their spines are spared from the aches and pains we all know and love, as my dad always told me when I was young, "If you keep looking down at your phone, you're going to get stuck like that." This begs the question: Where are Ivan's parents? (His mother is actually designer Natasha Zinko, so she shouldn't be too hard to track down.)
Who knows — health risks aside, maybe these Instagram stars onto something. Posing successfully is all about finding your angles, after all. But whatever your reasons, make sure you think before you slouch.