8 Ugly Facts About How The Fashion Industry Creates Beauty

Whether you're a woman from the U.S., Brazil, Japan, or elsewhere, every day you see images of "beauty" that probably look darn different than you do. Turns out the fashion industry isn't all that good for a lot of models either.

      Superstar models can be among the most powerful women in the world. But here are eight not-so-pretty facts about the seamy underside to an industry that needs oversight and cleaning up:

      1. Models start young.Really young. Cover model Thairine Garcia was 14when she appeared in the February 2012 issue of Harper's Bazaar Brasil. The Council of Fashion Designers of America recommends only using models older than 16, and child models in New York have brand new legal protection, but the industry is mostly self-regulated, and there is no broader oversight. Designers continue to employ models as young as 13.

      2. Modeling can take a high emotional toll on young women. A 2012 Model Alliance survey of 85 female fashion models in the United States revealed that almost two-thirds of them were told to lose weight and that almost 70% suffered from anxiety or depression. Georgina Wilkin shared her story to call attention to the prevalence of eating disorders among young models. Many girls recruited by the international fashion industry are leaving home for the first time, often unaccompanied by family, and are emotionally unprepared for the pressures of the industry. Isabelle Caro, Ana Carolina Reston, and Hila Elmalich (below) are just three of a number of fashion models to die of complications related to anorexia.

      3. Modeling careers are really, really short. Young women typically model only about three seasons. Every new runway show features about 70% new faces.

      4. It may look glamorous but the pay is not. The median salary?

      5. The financial picture can be even bleaker for young women recruited from other countries. After paying for visas, flights, accommodations, and tests (expenses they aren't always notified about in advance), even before their first casting call, these girls can be

      6. The more prestigious the client, the less you get paid. The glam jobs, like Vogue, can pay far less than commercial clients, like J.C. Penney.

      7. Fashion models are WAY skinner and taller than three decades ago. Marilyn says it all:

      8. The fashion industry projects an ideal of beauty that just doesn't match reality. While over half of Brazil's population is black or mixed race, only 28 of São Paulo 2008 Fashion Week's 1,128 models were black (that's about 2.5%). In The Real Truth About Beauty, a survey commissioned by Unilever, a global study of 3,200 women aged 18 to 64 found that only 2% of them thought of themselves as "beautiful." In one startling example, 52% of women in Japan describe themselves as overweight while only 23% actually are. Almost 60% felt that female beauty was too "narrowly defined."

      Here's the trailer for the POV episode on The International Model Supply Chain. Just a couple minutes of this, and you'll see why the fashion industry needs to clean up its act.


    10 anti-holiday recipes that prove the season can be tasty and healthy

    Balance out heavy holiday eating with some lighter—but still delicious—fare.


    Lighten your calorie load with some delicious, nutritious food between big holiday meals.


    The holiday season has arrived with its cozy vibe, joyous celebrations and inevitable indulgences. From Thanksgiving feasts to Christmas cookie exchanges to Aunt Eva’s irresistible jelly donuts—not to mention leftover Halloween candy still lingering—fall and winter can feel like a non-stop gorge fest.

    Total resistance is fairly futile—let’s be real—so it’s helpful to arm yourself with ways to mitigate the effects of eating-all-the-things around the holidays. Serving smaller amounts of rich, celebratory foods and focusing on slowly savoring the taste is one way. Another is to counteract those holiday calorie-bomb meals with some lighter fare in between.

    Contrary to popular belief, eating “light” doesn’t have to be tasteless, boring or unsatisfying. And contrary to common practice, meals don’t have to fill an entire plate—especially when we’re trying to balance out heavy holiday eating.

    It is possible to enjoy the bounties of the season while maintaining a healthy balance. Whether you prefer to eat low-carb or plant-based or gluten-free or everything under the sun, we’ve got you covered with these 10 easy, low-calorie meals from across the dietary spectrum.

    Each of these recipes has less than 600 calories (most a lot less) per serving and can be made in less than 30 minutes. And Albertsons has made it easy to find O Organics® ingredients you can put right in your shopping cart to make prepping these meals even simpler.


    eggs and green veggies in a skillet, plate of baconNot quite green eggs and ham, but closeAlbertsons

    Breakfast Skillet of Greens, Eggs & Ham

    273 calories | 20 minutes


    1 (5 oz) pkg baby spinach

    2 eggs

    1 clove garlic

    4 slices prosciutto

    1/2 medium yellow onion

    1 medium zucchini squash

    1/8 cup butter, unsalted

    1 pinch crushed red pepper

    Find full instructions and shopping list here.

    bow of cauliflower ham saladGet your cauliflower power on.Albertsons

    Creamy Cauliflower Salad with Ham, Celery & Dill

    345 calories | 20 minutes

    1/2 medium head cauliflower

    1 stick celery

    1/4 small bunch fresh dill

    8 oz. ham steak, boneless

    1/2 shallot

    1/4 tspblack pepper

    1/4 tsp curry powder

    2 tsp Dijon mustard

    1/4 tsp garlic powder

    3 Tbsp mayonnaise

    1/8 tsp paprika

    2 tsp red wine vinegar

    1/2 tsp salt

    Find full instructions and shopping list here.

    tofu on skewers on a plate with coleslawPlant-based food fan? This combo looks yums. Albertsons

    Grilled Chili Tofu Skewers with Ranch Cabbage, Apple & Cucumber Slaw

    568 calories | 20 minutes

    1 avocado

    1/2 English cucumber

    1 (12 oz.) package extra firm tofu

    1 Granny Smith apple

    3 Tbsp (45 ml) Ranch dressing

    1/2 (14 oz bag) shredded cabbage (coleslaw mix)

    2 tsp chili powder

    1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil

    1/2 tsp garlic powder

    1/2 tsp salt

    Find full instructions and shopping list here.

    frittata in a cast iron skilletSometimes you just gotta frittata.Albertsons

    Bell Pepper, Olive & Sun-Dried Tomato Frittata with Parmesan

    513 calories | 25 minutes

    6 eggs

    1/2 cup Kalamata olives, pitted

    2 oz Parmesan cheese

    1 red bell pepper

    1/2 medium red onion

    8 sundried tomatoes, oil-packed

    1/4 tsp black pepper

    1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil

    1/2 tsp Italian seasoning

    1/4 tsp salt

    Find full instructions and shopping list here.

    plate with slices of grilled chicken and a caprese saladCaprese, if you please.Albertsons

    Balsamic Grilled Chicken with Classic Caprese Salad

    509 calories | 25 minutes

    3/4 lb chicken breasts, boneless skinless

    1/2 small pkg fresh basil

    1/2 (8 oz pkg) fresh mozzarella cheese

    1 clove garlic

    3 tomatoes

    1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar

    4 3/4 pinches black pepper

    1 1/2 tsp extra virgin olive oil

    3/4 tsp salt

    Find full instructions and shopping list here.

    four stuffed mushrooms on a plateThese mushrooms look positively poppable.Albertsons

    Warm Goat Cheese, Parmesan & Sun-Dried Tomato Stuffed Mushrooms

    187 calories | 35 minutes

    1/2 lb cremini mushrooms

    1 clove garlic

    1/2 (4 oz) log goat cheese

    1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, shredded

    2 sundried tomatoes, oil-packed

    1 1/4 pinches crushed red pepper

    1 tsp extra virgin olive oil

    1/4 tsp Italian seasoning

    2 pinches salt

    Find full instructions and shopping list here.

    plate with open English muffin with goat cheese and sliced baby tomatoes on topMove over, avocado toast. English muffin pizzas have arrived.Albertsons

    English Muffin Pizzas with Basil Pesto, Goat Cheese & Tomatoes

    327 calories | 10 minutes

    3 Tbsp (45 ml) basil pesto

    2 English muffins

    1/2 (4 oz) log goat cheese

    1/2 pint grape tomatoes

    3/4 pinch black pepper

    2 pinches salt

    Find full instructions and shopping list here.

    pita pocket on a plate filled with veggies, meat and cheeseThis pita pocket packs a colorful punch.Albertsons

    Warm Pita Pocket with Turkey, Cheddar, Roasted Red Peppers & Parsley

    313 calories | 20 minutes

    1/4 (8 oz) block cheddar cheese

    1/2 bunch Italian (flat-leaf) parsley

    4 oz oven roasted turkey breast, sliced

    1/2 (12 oz) jar roasted red bell peppers

    1 whole grain pita

    3/4 pinch black pepper

    1/2 tsp Dijon mustard

    2 tsp mayonnaise

    Find full instructions and shopping list here.

    plate with toast smeared with avocado and topped with prosciuttoDid we say, "Move over, avocado toast?" What we meant was "Throw some prosciutto on it!" Albertsons

    Avocado Toast with Crispy Prosciutto

    283 calories | 10 minutes

    1 avocado

    2 slices prosciutto

    2 slices whole grain bread

    1 5/8 tsp black pepper

    1/2 tsp extra virgin olive oil

    1/8 tsp garlic powder

    1/8 tsp onion powder

    Find full instructions and shopping list here.

    bowl of chili with cheese and green onions on topVegetarian chili with a fall twistAlbertsons

    Black Bean & Pumpkin Chili with Cheddar

    444 calories | 30 minutes

    2 (15 oz can) black beans

    1/2 (8 oz ) block cheddar cheese

    2 (14.5 oz) cans diced tomatoes

    2 cloves garlic

    2 green bell peppers

    1 small bunch green onions (scallions)

    1 (15 oz) can pure pumpkin purée

    1 medium yellow onion

    1/2 tsp black pepper

    5 7/8 tsp chili powder

    1/2 tsp cinnamon

    2 tsp cumin, ground

    1 tsp salt

    1 Tbsp virgin coconut oil

    Find full instructions and shopping list here.

    For more delicious and nutritious recipes, visit albertsons.com/recipes.

    Image from Wikimedia Commons.

    Van Gogh’s Starry Night.

    Van Gough never got to enjoy his own historic success as an artist (even though we've been able to imagine what that moment might have looked like). But it turns out that those of us who have appreciated his work have been missing out on some critical details for more than 100 years.

    I'm not easily impressed, OK?

    I know Van Gogh was a genius. If the point of this were "Van Gogh was a mad genius," I would not be sharing this with you.
    Keep ReadingShow less

    Jennifer Garner's Ziploc care package.

    Homelessness has been on the increase in America since 2016 and the numbers exploded in 2020. On a single night in January 2020, there were more than 580,000 individuals who were without a home.

    There are many reasons for the increase in homelessness and one of the leading causes is a lack of affordable housing across the country. Housing prices have been on a steady increase and, according to PBS, we are about 7 million units short of affordable housing in the country.

    So what can the average person do about this human tragedy taking place in America’s streets? Some people who would like to help don’t feel comfortable giving money to homeless people, although experts in the field say that most of the time it is OK.

    Keep ReadingShow less

    Gen Xer shares some timeless advice for Gen Z.

    Meghan Smith is the owner of Melody Note Vintage store in the eternally hip town of Palm Springs, California, and her old-school Gen X advice has really connected with younger people on TikTok.

    In a video posted in December 2022, she shares the advice she wishes that “somebody told me in my twenties” and it has received more than 13 million views. Smith says that she gave the same advice to her partner's two daughters when they reached their twenties.

    The video is hashtagged #GenX advice for #GenZ and late #millennials. Sorry older millennials, you’re too old to receive these pearls of wisdom.

    Keep ReadingShow less

    James Barlow shares his story on TikTok.

    A dad is sharing his first encounter with a transgender woman in his small Texas town, and the simple lesson he taught his son is inspiring hope in others.

    James Eric Barlow (oddragon226 on TikTok) shared a video from his car describing how he and his son saw a trans woman in real life for the first time. "We all know that there's people that are disgusted whenever they see a trans person," Barlow begins. "And we all know of the people who don't care if they see a trans person.

    "But apparently, we're a third type of person (or at least I am, I can't speak for him)," he says, indicating his son in the backseat who chimes in with "I am, too!"

    Barlow then goes on to explain how they had just had their first experience with a trans woman. It wasn't anything major—she just walked through a door behind them and Barlow held the door for her, just as he would any other person. He didn't even notice she was trans at first, but once he did, his immediate reaction was one we can all learn from.

    Keep ReadingShow less

    It's rare enough to capture one antler being shed

    For those not well versed in moose facts, the shedding of antlers is normally a fairly lengthy process. It happens only once a year after mating season and usually consists of a moose losing one antler at a time.

    It’s incredibly rare for a bull moose to lose both at the same time—and even more rare that someone would actually catch it on film.

    That’s why shed hunter (yes, that’s a real term) and woodsman Derek Burgoyne calls his footage of the phenomenon a “one-in-a-million” shot.

    Keep ReadingShow less

    9 of the most intriguing Christmas-time traditions from around the world

    From the log that poops out Christmas presents in Catalonia to a towering cat that eats lazy children in Iceland, here are some fascinating holiday traditions that have emerged around the globe.

    The Tió de Nadal eats food scraps and poos candy and presents.

    Christmas is celebrated around the world, but it looks a bit different everywhere you go. While there are some fairly universal traditions, such as decorating a tree and giving gifts, there are some traditions specific to different cultures that are both unique and intriguing.

    Check these out:

    1. ITALY—La Befana: The Good Witch

    women in la befana costumes holding broomsticksWomen dressed up as La BefanaEleonora Gianinetto/Wikimedia Commons

    In Italy, La Befana is a good witch who flies around on a broomstick on January 5th, the night before Epiphany. Children put their shoes out with a glass of wine and a piece of bread for La Befana, and fills their shoes with candy or small gifts—or chunks of coal, onions or garlic for the naughty ones

    2. ICELAND—The Yule Lads

    Iceland’s 13 Yule Lads are merry and mischievous troll-like figures, each with a different name and personality. They visit children one at a time during the 13 days leading up to Christmas, leaving gifts and playing tricks, including leaving rotten potatoes in the shoes of kids who don’t behave. According to the Smithsonian, the Yule Lads used to be a lot creepier, but in 1746, the country outlawed scaring children with monstrous tales about the 13 lads. (Would love to know what prompted that law!)

    3. ALSO ICELAND—The Yule Cat

    yule cat sculpture

    Yule Cat on display in downtown Reykjavik, December 2022

    ProcrastinatingHistorian/Wikimedia Commons

    As if the Yule Lads weren’t enough, a towering, fearsome cat roams the Icelandic countryside around Christmastime, peeking into homes to spy on children’s presents. In Icelandic tradition, if kids get all of their chores done, they are gifted some new clothes. If the Yule Cat (aka Jólakötturinn) sees that a child wasn’t given clothes (in other words, a child was lazy), the cat proceeds to eats the child’s dinner and then moves on to eating the child. Yes, you read that right. It eats the child. Icelandic folklore doesn’t mess around.

    4. PHILIPPINES—The Giant Lantern Festival

    five colorful, lit up displays

    Giant Lantern Festival 2012

    Ramon FVelasquez/Wikimedia Commons

    In the Philippines, the Giant Lantern Festival is held in San Fernando City (dubbed the Christmas capital of the Philippines) every year the week before Christmas Eve. According to Travel & Leisure, the lantern tradition is rooted in the history of Filipino Catholics building small, colorful lanterns to light up the procession to Christmas Eve mass. The giant parol lanterns for the festival, however, are huge—up to 20 feet tall—and it can take up to 10,000 light bulbs to illuminate them.

    5. SPAIN (CATALONIA)—The Tió de Nadal (pooping log)

    log with legs, a smiley face, a hat and a blenket

    The Tió de Nadal is a Catalan Christmas tradition.

    Public Domain/Wikimedia Commons

    Some cultures have a yule log. Catalonia, Spain, has the Tió de Nadal—a log with a hat, a blanket, a smiley face and a penchant for pooping out presents. Children feed the smiling log scraps of food at night and it poop out presents on Christmas Day. There's even a song kids sing to the log, imploring it to not poop out salted herring (too salty), but nougats in instead, all while hitting the log with a stick. According to Catalan tradition, the eating of the scraps and the beating with the stick leads to Tió de Nadal pooping out presents and nougat on Christmas. And apparently, no one questions it.

    6. BAVARIA—The Krampus

    person wearing a scary looking horned mask

    Krampus costume

    Anita Martinz/Wikimedia Commons

    In Bavaria (which includes Austria, Germany, Switzerland and some of the surrounding area), the Krampus is a centuries-old tradition that has been revived in modern times. The Krampus is a horned, hairy, hellish creature who follows St. Nick on his rounds to punish naughty children by scaring them (or tossing them in a sack and beating them). Many cities hold Krampus festivals each year, where people parade around in Krampus costumes like the one above.

    7. VENEZUELA—Roller Skating to Christmas Mass

    someone skating outside in pink roller skates

    Venezuelans roller skate on Christmas

    Photo by Daniel Lincoln on Unsplash

    Most of us don't association Christmas with roller skating, but that's not the case for Venezuelans. Christmas is an all-night roller skating party, which includes singing Christmas songs and culminates with everyone rolling their way to Christmas Mass at dawn. Most interestingly, according to a Venezuelan woman's explanation in America Magazine, it's not even like Venezuelans are a big roller skating culture the rest of the year—it's just a Christmas thing.

    8. JAPAN—A Finger Lickin' Good Tradition

    people lined up outside a Kentucky Fried Chicken

    KFCs are packed for Christmas in Japan

    Photo by Stabel Webel on Unsplash

    Japan doesn't have a long history with Christmas and thus no long-standing traditions associated with it. What they do have is 50 years of eating KFC for Christmas, thanks to a "Kentucky for Christmas" marketing campaign launched by the first KFC restaurant owner in Nagoya, Japan, in 1970. Somehow, it stuck and is now a beloved tradition for millions of Japanese families.

    9. UKRAINE—Spider Webs on Christmas Trees

    spider and spider web ornament in tree

    Ukrainians celebrate spiders at Christmas.

    Erika Smith/Wikimedia Commons

    According to Ukrainian legend, an impoverished widow and her children grew a tree from a pinecone outside of their house, but they were too poor to decorate it for Christmas. The household spiders heard the children's sobs and spun their webs into decorations overnight. When the children awoke on Christmas morning, they cried out “Mother, mother wake up and see the tree. It is beautiful!” As the day went on and the sun's rays hit the delicate webs, they transformed into silver and gold and the widow never wanted for anything again. Today, Ukrainians decorate trees with spider webs for good luck and fortune in the new year.

    Whatever your family or cultural holiday traditions are, let's celebrate the differences that make our world so interesting.