An Australian-based swimwear brand has been criticised on social media for appearing to have a lack of diversity in their latest campaign.
Lahana, which has been featured on Love Island and Bachelor in Paradise, shared a gallery of snaps this week featuring a group of thin, young women posing in black bikinis at the beach.
While the shoot was intended to highlight ‘real bodies’ and celebrate ‘body positivity’, followers quickly took to the comments to accuse the brand of not being inclusive.
“There are no curvy women or plus size women here or coloured women here. It’s all skinny white women. Unfollowing,” one person wrote, followed by another who added, “The lack of diversity is atrocious and actually embarrassing”.
“Tf is this, WHERE is the representation?” a third replied. “How tone deaf can you be to post this at all let alone with the caption ‘real bodies’? Get it together lol this is embarrassing.”
“A swing and a miss,” someone else remarked. “We see enough of this representation. Show us some women with disabilities, women of colour, women with body hair, trans women, older women.”
However, others defended the brand and argued that “it’s so hard to please everyone”.
“Not every single post made by this company needs to cater for EVERY single body shape or colour, are you kidding me?” one fan commented.
“This is amazing,” a different user shared. “We can’t please everyone, can we? Get a grip.”
Lahana speaks out against backlash
It wasn’t long before Lahana addressed the backlash and explained that the people featured in the campaign had all responded to a local call out for women with “real bodies”.
“These are ‘real bodies’ because they are bodies lived and inhabited by their powerful owners,” they said in a statement.
“Yes we would [have] loved to have more shapes and skin tones, but these are the beautiful, strong girls who decided to show up and participate on the day. We are so grateful for them and the energy they brought to the shoot.”
The brand added that they “can always do better” and the intention of the campaign was to showcase “community, solidarity, [and] showing power in your body”.
“To those who choose to criticise, we hear you, we understand you and we will try harder in our next community call out to make sure you are seen and heard,” they said.
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