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Models to Get Carded at Castings

If anyone had a reason to check my ID when I was modeling, it would have been to confirm I was of retirement age. Models were put out to pasture at 21. Agencies in New York wouldn’t see new faces past age 18. Like all of my “ancient” modeling friends, I rarely revealed my real age when casting directors asked. At first I adjusted my age based on the job. Then I realized it was too confusing to keep track of  how old different clients thought I was, so I ditched my summer of ’69 birthday for one in 1972.

Now models may get carded to make sure they are not too young (gasp! “Too young”— now there’s a new concept for the fashion world). All 19 international editions of Vogue have agreed to the following pact:

“1. We will not knowingly work with models under the age of 16 or who appear to have an eating disorder. We will work with models who, in our view, are healthy and help to promote a healthy body image.

Karlie Kloss on Vogue

Karlie Kloss, Korean Vogue

2. We will ask agents not to knowingly send us underage girls and casting directors to check IDs when casting shoots, shows and campaigns.

Codie Young in Vogue

Codie Young in Vogue














3. We will help to structure mentoring programs where more mature models are able to give advice and guidance to younger girls, and we will help to raise industry-wide awareness through education, as has been integral to the Council of Fashion Designers of America Health Initiative.

4. We will encourage producers to create healthy backstage working conditions, including healthy food options and a respect for privacy. We will encourage casting agents not to keep models unreasonably late.

5. We encourage designers to consider the consequences of unrealistically small sample sizes of their clothing, which limits the range of women who can be photographed in their clothes, and encourages the use of extremely thin models.

6. We will be ambassadors for the message of healthy body image.”


It will be interesting to compare issues of Vogue pre-pact to those post-pact and assess the impact on the whole industry. Let’s hope the editors follow through.

As for #3, the modeling mentor is here! Send your Dear Jill questions (scroll down the page in this link to read some past Dear Jill Q&A’s).