25 Italian women took off their clothes in public — but for a really good reason

Body positivity continues to look for a place in the fashion industry, with the runway being one of the last spaces to accommodate the movement. But in place of those platforms that have yet to include women of different shapes and sizes, social media‘s most influential bloggers are establishing their own arenas to bring attention to the importance of body positivity.

Following the lead of inclusive runway shows that took place over the past year in the New York area — two of which coincided with the notoriously exclusive Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show — Italian blogger Laura Brioschi kick-started a body positive catwalk during Milan Fashion Week. Gathering 25 women from all over Italy, the woman behind the blog Love Curvy set up the #BodyPositiveCatwalk right outside of the distinguished Duomo Cathedral to gain widespread attention. The women made even more of a statement by stripping down to their underwear despite the cold February weather.

In a statement to Yahoo Lifestyle by Brioschi’s team, they write that the women are showing off the one thing that unites us all, which is skin. “Clothes can hide cellulite, pimples, stretch marks and we have nothing to hide!” Brioschi reiterated in her blog, while sharing that each woman wore a garment that she felt comfortable in.

Many participants were influencers themselves, while others were “normal” people who just wanted to get involved. Most notable was the support from the AIPD, which is the Association of Italy for People with Down Syndrome.

A model named Valentina Rota walked to represent the organization, saying, “I am here to show that all women, even with Down syndrome, can feel good in their skin and create something extraordinary of their lives.”

With women ranging in sizes from a US 10 to 30, Brioschi hopes to showcase curvy body types, which she considers to be a happy medium between being too thin or too overweight. At size 18 herself, the model continues to spread her message with the hashtag #CurvyIsNotACrime.

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