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American Apparel's New Call For Models Almost Makes Us Miss Dov Charney

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A most recent casting call for models (Animal New York)
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Flailing hipster brand American Apparel has a new CEO with a lot going for her: unlike her predecessor Dov Charney, she seems to have business sense and perhaps just as important the common sense to not masturbate in front of a journalist. New Chief Executive Paula Schneider has said that the company plans to beef up its online business, streamline its offerings and tone down the sexuality of its controversial ad campaigns.Ironically, it's that last part that is stirring attention lately. Last week came the news that the nipples and pubes that the company was so notorious for were being airbrushed away. It's not an unusual move in the fashion industry where women are photoshopped to resemble plastic barbie dolls more than humans.

And now the New York site Animal has published a casting call for models at its Los Angeles headquarters sent out by PhotoGenics Media. It ask for "REAL MODELS. NOT INSTAGRAM HOES OR THOTS."

PhotoGenics Agency Director Phira Luon took full responsibility for the e-mail, writing to Animal, "The comment made at the end was made in jest with models whom i have a personal relationship with and did not reflect the views, or directives by the client. i apologize to all those who were offended or affected by my comments, as it was not my intention."

It sounds like Luon regrets the slang but the point still stands: American Apparel plans to fall back into line with the rest of the fashion industry's standards of beauty. An anonymous employee at American Apparel told Animal that the recently hired Senior Vice President of Marketing Cynthia Erland is behind the new airbrushing policy and also the push to cast what you might call more traditional models. She reportedly said the women featured on the site now are too "short" and "round," and she's hoping to hire white women with an Eastern European look who are taller than 5'7". Just like every other entity in the fashion world.

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We're loathe to call anything Charney did in the realm of sexuality progressive—this is a man who was as well known for the sexual harassment suits targeting him as anything he ever sold. But we're going to go ahead and pour one out for a Charney's push for an aesthetic that was slightly more diverse, slightly more realistic.