In the wake of Mental Health Day, we have been given a yearly reminder of how mental health needs to be taken seriously. The fashion industry, which is quick to change – often deals with the topic of mental illness. The pandemic and lockdowns have also taken their toll on people’s well-being. In fact, the fashion industry is still experiencing a decline and shift due to these massive changes. But time and time again, designers and Super models come forward to address mental health problems in the industry. Big brands even work together to create platforms to enable this, too.

Credit: UNEP

In an industry marked with glamour, beauty and lifestyle – is there enough space for mental health problems?

Mental Health and Fashion Industry

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Mental health issues in the fashion industry are multi-faced. On the surface, media, models and designers are visible. But underneath, workers, instructors, students and consumerism play a huge role. Sarah Idacavage states that,

“problems related to mental health [are] in every part of the fashion industry, although the pressures experienced by designers are typically what gets the most attention, contributing to a rather hegemonic view of how fashion impacts mental health. However, these issues are far more pervasive and multifaceted. In fashion media, you will find anxious interns and models with eating disorders. On the production side, you will find garment workers suffering from PTSD caused by unsafe working conditions. In many fashion schools, you will find students experiencing depression and exhaustion, as well as instructors who are stretched thin and in constant states of panic due the precarity of their jobs.”

 Australia and Mental Health Status

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A  recent article published by Forbes magazine which includes a report conducted by app named Headscape. It states,

“72% of Australians have missed at least one day of work during the past year due to stress, anxiety and other mental health challenges .Likewise, one in three Australian workers feel their employer isn’t doing enough to support their mental health.

The result shown by the study narrates a wake-up call for all of us. And the numbers tell clear stories. There should be more talk about mental health.

In all, the relationship between mental health and the fashion industry is complex yet very deep. The question remains: is every contributor to the fashion industry able to work within a stable mental space?

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