Natalia Vodianova: 'It's Better To Be Skinny Than To Be Fat' (UPDATED)

London's much-hyped Vogue Festival came and went this weekend, with celebs, designers and models treating an eager British public to tales of their fashion careers and memories. (Note to Anna Wintour: can we start this in the U.S.?)

While we were sadly stuck stateside, British journalists attended the various panels and reported back. The most surprising report of all? The lively conversation between models Eva Herzigova, Lily Cole, Jourdan Dunn and Natalia Vodianova, in which Natalia declared: "C'mon guys, you know it's better to be skinny than to be fat."

Olivia Bergin at the Telegraph relayed the comment, which came in the context of a conversation on healthy body weight. According to the Telegraph, the models admitted that they've been blessed with genetically slim figures. But in discussing "fat" versus "skinny" bodies, Cole pointed out that the body types we deem beautiful are in fact culturally relative; there are societies, she noted, where curvier bodies are preferred to skinny ones.

Whereupon Vodianova offered her "better to be skinny than to be fat" comment.

The Russian model was quick to clarify that she was referring to obesity -- indeed, everyone agrees that when it comes to health, being not obese is better than being obese. But it is a disappointing sound bite from a high-profile model, one that could easily be twisted into this year's version of "Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels."

Hopefully Vodianova's own track record -- healthy exercise, not depriving herself a few indulgences -- disproves any pro-ana leanings. But still, we wonder if "It's better to be skinny than to be fat" was the best choice of words...

Read more from the model panel at and check out more fitness-minded models below.

UPDATE: After her comment received wide press coverage, Natalia responded on her Facebook with a lengthy note. In it, she stated, "It makes me feel even more sad that so much has been taken out of contexts by tabloid media," adding:

If I was giving a speech I would have chosen my words more carefully of course but considering the format and that so many people came up to me afterwards and told me how happy they were to have laughed and were glad that I was so "normal" and direct at the conference I doubt I offended someone there and if I did I apologise because I surely only meant to highlight a different point of view.

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