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Primark forced to remove skinny-looking mannequin with protruding ribs after customer complaint

The budget shop is slammed for having ultra-thin mannequins on its window display

Just a few months after lingerie brand La Perla apologised for its controversially thin store mannequins, Primark is slammed for a similar dummy in its shop window.

Recently, there have been big steps made in the fashion industry towards a healthier-looking body image. Real women have been presented in catwalks during fashion week at shows like Jean Paul Gaultier and department store Debenhams announced in November last year that it would be rolling out size 16 mannequins across the country alongside its standard size 10. However, there is still a trend for models and mannequins that could be considered too thin.

The budget fashion house sparked controversy after a customer shared on Twitter a picture of a mannequin with jutting ribs and concave stomach in the window display of its Glasgow branch.

Concerned shopper Mel Fraser tweeted the image of the dummy to Primark bosses saying: “Dear Primark, is it really necessary that these new mannequins have protruding ribs? … I’d just like to see mannequins in all different shapes and sizes in all stores rather than young girls thinking this is the only way to be.”

Primark replied promptly promising an investigation, but her picture had already spread quickly on the internet with over 1400 shares and social media users slamming the use of such mannequin as “shocking”, “disgusting” and “utterly terrifying”. Yesterday the store announced it is currently changing its window displays. The store was forced to remove the dummy and in a tweet it said: “The mannequin you describe will not be used in this way again.”

Primark, however, is not the first store to be slammed for promoting unhealthy bodies. Earlier this year the luxury lingerie label La Perla was strongly criticised after a customer tweeted a picture of an ultra-thin mannequin in its Manhattan boutique, and those were also quickly removed. High street giants Gap and Zara have also come under fire in the past, and in 2007 Spanish brand Mango agreed not to display mannequins smaller than size 6.

La Perla's mannequin with visible ribs

Good news is that not every customer sees these mannequins normal and action is being taken to achieve a balance of sizes in shop windows.