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10 Celebrities snubbed by designers due to racism, ageism and body shaming

From Zendaya to Ashley Graham

10 Celebrities snubbed by designers due to racism, ageism and body shaming From Zendaya to Ashley Graham

The recent comments by Selena Gomez and Ariana Grande have shown that celebrities are also often subjected to body shaming. But it's not just fans or haters who judge and comment negatively, brands also do this when they refuse to dress a star for the red carpet because they do not meet certain beauty standards. This has happened in the past to ZendayaBeyoncéAshley Graham, Kristen Stewart and many others who had nothing to wear because a certain fashion house thought they were not white enough, thin enough, young enough, grown up enough, cool enough or whatever. Racism, ageism and body shaming have a huge impact on how we judge the fashion industry, which has always positioned itself as an exclusive and elitist environment for a select few.

Here are 10 celebrities who have been snubbed by designers:


Zendaya e Law Roach

Today, Zendaya is a fashion icon, coveted by big brands who offer her and her stylist Law Roach their creations in the hope of seeing her on the red carpets, but it was not always that way. Law said that when they started working together in 2011, "a lot of fashion houses were not dressing black women", hence the idea of relying on up-and-coming designers. The move proved successful and led to more creativity and visibility, helping both the couple and some of the brands they support to achieve higher status in the fashion world.


Kristen Stewart

Kristen Stewart's stylist, Tara Swennen, confessed that she spent a full seven years trying to convince Lanvin to dress her client. The answer? Always the same: no. The fashion house kept turning her down because, despite her popularity, she did not represent the house's target audience, which tended to be 30-somethings. In the meantime, time passed, Kristen grew up and became an ambassador for Chanel. So when Lanvin showed interest, it was Stewart and her stylist who turned down the proposal.


Megan Mullally

Despite being the host of the 2019 SAG Awards, Megan Mullally could not find a single stylist willing to dress her for the big event. In a red carpet interview, she said, "The major designers are not interested in sending me any dresses... I said but I'm literally hosting, there is a 100% chance that I will be on camera. But people were like "no, no thanks"". She stated that Alexander McQueen sent her two dresses that did not fit, so the Will & Grace star decided to buy another from the same brand online. That's DIY for three!


Cardi B

In 2018, Cardi B was one of the hottest names of the moment with a song, Bodak Yellow, in heavy rotation, but she was promptly rejected by designers who deemed her not "it" girl enough. However, the singer was not discouraged and continued on her path, as she said in an interview, "It's just something you've got to prove to people, just like music... A lot of music people didn't want to work with me at first, and you've just got to prove yourself." In the end, Cardi B got the attention she deserved, both in the music and fashion world.


Bebe Rexha

"If a size 6/8 is 'too big'...then I don't wanna wear your fucking dresses." With these words, Bebe Rexha reacted via Instagram to all those brands who refused to dress her at the 2019 Grammy Awards, for which she was nominated, because she did not fit a runway size. After the video, a number of designers, including Christian Siriano, offered to dress Bebe, but the artist opted for a Monsoori model and was able to have her "Cinderella moment".


Ashley Graham

In 2016, Ashley Graham told The Cut that despite being invited, she did not attend the Met Gala because she could not find anyone to dress her and "you can't just show up in jeans and a T-shirt". A similar thing happened on the cover of British Vogue in January 2017, when former editor-in-chief Alexandra Shulman pointed out that many designers, with the exception of Stuart Vevers of Coach, would not send clothes for a model who did not have a standard body.


Kim Kardashian

In the early 2010s, when Kim Kardashian was trying to break into the fashion industry, she was rejected by almost all major brands. Among the few "brave ones" who worked with her were Nicola Formichetti and former Givenchy creative director Riccardo Tisci, who designed her wedding dress that later landed on the cover of Vogue America. Commenting on the cover, Tisci said: "Four or five years ago, no fashion house would touch her. But Kim represents the woman of today." In the meantime, things have changed and Kim has become a celebrity coveted by top brands such as Dolce & Gabbana, with whom she recently launched a capsule.


Destiny's Child

There's a reason Beyoncé's mother was the one who designed all of Destiny's Child's clothes, and it was Bey herself who revealed this during the 2016 CFDAs, where she was honoured with the Fashion Icon Award: "Starting out in Destiny's Child, high-end labels didn't really want to dress four Black country curvy girls, and we couldn't afford designer dresses and couture. My mother was rejected from every showroom in New York. But like my grandmother, she used her talent and her creativity to give her children their dreams."


Melissa McCarthy

In 2012, Melissa McCarthy had received an Oscar nomination for best supporting actress for her performance in The Bridesmaids, but she couldn't find anyone to dress her. She eventually walked the red carpet in a rose gold gown by Marina Rinaldi, but the experience prompted her to create her own clothing brand dedicated to helping women "feel good about themselves."


Jane Seymour

Jane Seymour was a Bond girl, a glamour icon, and an "unofficial muse" in the 1980s and 1990s, but, now that she is past 60, few designers choose to dress her or her peers. In 2019, she recalled the days when Versace used to send her creations and said that, even though it doesn't happen now, she has no plans to limit her style and has no problem wearing again models she has already sported in the past.