Expect to see a little less skin at January’s CES trade show.
The Consumer Technology Association has updated its dress code policies for CES, strengthening language to make clear that participants are expected to dress in clothing “considered appropriate and respectful for a professional environment.”
Exhibitors often hire models to work in their booths and promote various products. In years’ past, some have taken to dressing the models — sometimes referred to as “booth babes” — in revealing clothing to draw in more people.
Paul Sanders, a senior booking agent for Las Vegas Talent Inc., said he’s heard models in the past complain about being uncomfortable with exhibitors in the past when asked to wear tight or revealing clothing.
“There are some exhibitors that ask for very sexy clothing, such as short skirts,” Sanders said. “I know the models would rather wear a more conservative wardrobe.”
While models will still be allowed to work at the trade show, CTA has strengthened the language surrounding their attire.
“CTA is committed to creating an experience at CES that is inclusive and welcoming for everyone,” according to a statement from the association. “This year we made our dress code more specific and we have a penalty for those who don’t adhere to the policy.”
According to the association’s code of conduct, participants cannot dress in clothing that is “sexually revealing or may be interpreted as undergarments, gender notwithstanding.” Clothing that reveals an excess of bare skin and “body-conforming clothing that hugs genitals” must not be worn. Clothing that imitates armed forces or law enforcement or appears to threaten the safety of event participants is also prohibited.
If trade show management determines the attire as inappropriate, the participant may be asked to alter their attire, and can be removed from the event premises.
Olya Ishchukova, founder of California-based promotional modeling agency Models In Tech, said she’s happy the organizers have made these policy changes.
“It can only hurt your brand when you dress up people in revealing clothes,” she said. “It’s disrespectful to your staff. It’s vulgar.”