Thigh gap jewellery exists — but it’s not what it seems

I’m kind of over the whole thigh gap debate already. Some of us have one, some of us don’t. (FYI, it’s about the width of your hips compared to the length of your femoral head not about how big your thighs are.)

More: Thigh gap to finger trap: We are measuring beauty all wrong

To hold the thigh gap up as some kind of beauty standard is damaging because it’s simply impossible for some people to achieve it — and those who have one naturally while being perfectly healthy and not at all interested in social media trends shouldn’t have to justify the shape of their bodies.

My first reaction when I first saw TGap Jewellery’s thigh gap jewellery was disbelief. For about five seconds before I remembered that this is the Internet and everything is not always as it seems.

Thigh gap jewellery
Image: TGap Jewellery
thigh gap jewellery
Image: TGap Jewellery

Sure enough TGap’s range of bronze-based, 18 karat gold-plated, adjustable chains, designed to be worn around the thighs, isn’t actually a real jewellery collection. TGap itself is a fictional company that has been created to “catalyze a debate on [the] unrealistic body image social media portrays.”

More: Why calling out thigh gaps in ads hurts more than it helps

“Thigh gap represents one of the first few trends regarding body ideals the media has popularised,” TGap Singaporean designer Soo Kyung Bae told Dezeen. “It clearly demonstrates media’s power on influencing one’s perception of body image [sic].

“The jewellery pieces take the thigh-gap trend to another level, the pieces are created in hopes of sparking questions. If we let the media to keep popularising such unrealistic body ideal, will this eventually become reality? [sic]”

After the website was launched last week Bae received a lot of shocked, enraged and confused comments. But, as the truth behind the website was revealed, she said people were “appreciative” of her attempt to bring awareness to the issue.

“By using outrageous products, I hope to bring a provocative jolt that leads us to ponder and reflect upon what we are like as a society and the absurd things we value and obsess over — as well as how this creates unnecessary pressure for women and girls,” she said.

Bae makes valid points and her concept is clever. But is spoof thigh gap jewellery the way to bring awareness to the issue? Do we really need to ask any more questions?

Instead of continuing to talk about thigh gaps or whatever ridiculous new body comparison trend is going viral, couldn’t we simply celebrate the fact that all bodies are different — and beautiful in their own right?

Those who take dieting to the extreme in order to achieve a completely unrealistic notion of beauty need professional help, not pretend jewellery.

If you’ve been affected by any of the issues in this article please contact Beat or Mind for information and support.

More: New “highbrow” hashtag craze could be new “thigh gap”