The article has been automatically translated into English by Google Translate from Russian and has not been edited.

Mini Miss: why I am against children in the modeling business

Anastasia Alexeenko

Blogger, stylist, author of the "Fashion Blog".


Youth is a new trend, which bound both beauty and fashion industries. And while some are ready to give any money for anti-aging procedures., others believe, that the key to success is an early start to a career, and send their children to the modeling business. Why you shouldn't do this, says blogger Anastasia Alekseenko.

I have long wanted to write about it, but now I observe the development of the situation in my close circle. And so I decided to make a separate article about why, in my opinion, children should not be sent to model schools and encouraged to participate in all sorts of children's beauty contests.

For the most part, their children's modeling business is primarily a business of pumping money out of parents. Model schools, courses, photo shoots, portfolio shooting - this is the minimum list of expenses. To participate in beauty contests, you need to sew costumes, prepare makeup, hairstyles, and also all for your own money. Agencies often make money on children in the dark. There are cases when children participate in a paid shooting (that is, the customer paid for the shooting and, among other things, allocated a budget for fees for small models), but the agency representatives tell the parents that this shooting is not paid, that this is “work for the future, for portfolio ”and so on.

If we are talking about child models that are already working on the set, their rights are almost not protected. In the West, there is an already developed mechanism for protecting the rights of children, which helps to keep everything within and control so that the shooting does not damage health or psyche. There are special labor standards for children, which, for example, prohibit, among other things, night and late night work. And at the same time we have Ukrainian Fashion Week screenings with the participation of children may well take place at 10-11 pm (given that the children had already been waiting for their show not for an hour or two), and a representative of an advertising agency proudly talks about the night shooting of an advertisement for an Eldorado equipment store, a small whose heroine had to do a lot of takes, but she coped. Of course, here first of all questions are for parents. But the law exists for this, to protect children in cases when the vanity of mothers obscures their eyes.
Lack of perspective. No matter how much the agents and organizers of the contests hang on the parents' ears, the prospects for child models are very vague. While the child is small and cute, you may be able to arrange some profitable financial shootings and contracts. But children are growing fast. And it may well turn out that a pretty face, which looked great in the frame at 10 years old, at 14-15 will be out of the trends of adult modeling. In serious modeling business, the assessment is based on other criteria. Childish plumpness is replaced by model thinness. Not to mention the fact that a cute doll girl may simply not grow to a model minimum of 177 cm. And even if she does, she will not have any advantages over those whom the scouts found already in adulthood. I'm not even talking about the fact that often the aesthetics of children's beauty contests is far from the aesthetics of the fashion industry and the concept of "good taste".
Among other things, parents are promised that their child will be able to earn money now. Just a little more - and contracts with brands, commercials for children's products and other shootings will arrive, after which money will be showered on a happy family. In fact, this business is poorly developed in the post-Soviet space. The industry is practically non-existent. Therefore, there is simply not enough work for small models. This is the first thing. Second - who wants to pay money to shoot models when there is a huge number of children nearby, whose parents are ready to shoot them for free, "for the sake of perspective or portfolio." And thirdly, due to the underdevelopment of the market, one large contract will most likely mean that business will stop there. The popular replicated face is becoming familiar, and for new filming, they will most likely be looking for something fresh. The variant of adult modeling, when the model earns a name and image for herself, and then everyone wants to invite her to himself, does not work here. Do you know a lot of the names of those children whom you saw in advertising? There are also unnamed adults. There are fewer magazine shootings that require children than adults. The catalogs of children's brands are mostly foreign and are filmed in the same place. In general, all this mouse fuss with castings, filming, and, moreover, with children's beauty contests seems to me an absolutely meaningless activity, neurotizing the child and parents. Yes, we know the story of Mila Jovovich, which my mother shoved wherever she could. Lessons in the car and lunch on the go were the norm in her childhood. And now Mila is a world-class actress. But we do not know how many other girls spent their childhood like this, and now they work at the checkout in the supermarket. And actress Brooke Shields's candid book tells us that even successful children aren't always grateful to their mothers.
If you look seriously, then in children's sports or some other types of activity, everything is the same - only a few become stars. But the difference with modeling is that those who are not famous get nothing in modeling except neurosis and the belief that they are “not good enough”. Hundreds of thousands of graduates of music schools do not become performers, vocalists and generally do not associate life with music in any way. But regular music-making develops certain areas of the brain. And it will stay with them forever. Yes, in children's sports there are unscrupulous coaches who encourage parents of even not the most promising children to spend extra money. But this does not negate the fact that children do a huge amount of work: regular training, competition, regimen, work on themselves. All this also remains with them. What is left with those who lost in the children's beauty contest and children's modeling? The ability to speak from the stage and not be afraid of the camera? So any theater studio will give all the same, and in a larger volume, better quality and in a healthy children's team. Moreover, for less money and without the neurosis of “failure”. PS When I finished writing the text, I got into Google for illustrations. And here is the result with frequently preferred queries. Tell me, would you like the photo of your child to be found by the query “children model in lingerie” or “children model in swimsuits”?

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