I was so excited to be invited to work at The Model Zone at London Fashion Week this year as one of the homeopaths. My previous forays into the world of fashion-employee having been a student job at an American store in Brent Cross in the 90’s. I didn’t enjoy that one bit.
But now, as someone who has followed debates on women in the fashion industry I was really pleased to be representing Weleda who sponsor the Model Zone. The brainchild of Erin O’Connor and handed to the British Fashion Council for safe-keeping, The model zone is a nurturing space that gives models a place to rest, eat, receive wonderful treatments and feel safe. O’Connor started this initiative in 2008 after the 2007 Models Health Initiative which took a look at how young girls were being treated in the Industry, particularly during Fashion Week. Young girls in a highly pressurised environment were not given food in between shows and their well-being was not high on anyone’s agenda, this coupled with the notorious size 0 debate ; led to the birth of this wonderful place for models to relax in.
Originally Erin O’Connor asked Weleda for a few products to pamper the models. This has evolved into facials, massages, cranio-sacral therapy and homeopathy being offered by Weleda Wellbeing Advisors during the busiest time in the Fashion calendar.
My weekend was spent giving hand massages in a comfy hotel suite to the models. Whilst pampering them it gave me time to give mini-consultations and answer any health questions they had. Multinational backgrounds (Brazil, Scandinavia, EU, West Indies, East and West Africa, Asia and Antipodean) yet they share the same worries; anxieties about skin and skin care, to name but a few ailments. The unifying cross-cultural issue seems to be the worries about their feet; blisters, fractures, bruising, all common denominators of the model’s nightmare…being forced to catwalk in shoes that are the wrong size!
Of course, when you work with such a great company as Weleda, there are many solutions! My favourite; Arnica muscle soak, can really help with those poorly feet, whether in a foot bath or a whole body bath. There are a great range of over the counter remedies for first aid concerns, plus it’s a real joy to give advice to girls who think the only solution to pain caused by scoliosis or hypermobility is paracetomol or worse. Homeopathy rocks!