As you walk down a busy Soho street you feel their eyes furtively peeking between your legs. You imagine the waves of ridiculing laughter rippling in your wake. That’s right; you don’t have a thigh gap, the new and all-consuming pre-requisite for female desirability. How they can tell through your long winter coat is something of a mystery, but you know with utter certainty that they can.

You’re overwhelmed by the desire to flash your iPad and re-read the WikiHow article, ‘6 Ways to Get a Thigh Gap’, most of which involve resigning yourself to not getting a thigh gap

You settle into your seat on the tube. You’re overwhelmed by the desire to flash your iPad and re-read the WikiHow article, ‘6 Ways to Get a Thigh Gap’, most of which involve resigning yourself to not getting a thigh gap. But no, you can’t, it’s too risky. Too many have mastered the art of reading other peoples’ devices upside-down, back-to-front or reflected in train windows. It’s no wonder they can tell you don’t have a thigh gap. All your attention is drawn to that awful clammy place where your thighs do what they’re designed to do… touch.

A woman settles next to you with a confident sweep of her Burberry coat. She, clearly, has a thigh gap. She has probably paid thousands to a Thigh Gap Specialist to achieve this, a specialist who will not be unemployed anytime soon. Yet the specialist also has an awful clammy place they would rather not acknowledge. The beauty industry waits with dread for the moment when women realise that the key to feeling good is not what their body looks like, but that they love the look of their own body.