A Turkish fitness influencer said she was barred from an American Airlines flight because her denim shorts were 'too short'

·2 min read
  • Deniz Saypinar, a fitness influencer, spoke out against American Airlines in Instagram Stories.

  • The Turkish model accused the company of unfairly targeting her for wearing "too short" shorts.

  • American Airlines said a customer was removed from a flight last Thursday.

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The Turkish model and social-media influencer Deniz Saypinar said she was barred from an American Airlines flight last Thursday because her shorts were too short.

Saypinar, 26, a bodybuilder who was the first woman in Turkey to earn professional status from the International Federation of Bodybuilding and Fitness, said she was heading from Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport to Miami for Miami Swim Week, an annual modeling show, CBS DFW, a local CBS affiliate, reported.

Saypinar alleged in Stories on Instagram, where she has 1 million followers, that American Airlines had mistreated her. Though the Stories were no longer available on Tuesday, The Independent reported on Monday that in them she said the airline thought her denim shorts were "too short."

According to The Independent, Saypinar said, "They literally didn't take me to the plane because they say 'you're naked and you offend other families.'" A photo Saypinar shared on her Instagram Story showed that she'd been wearing a sports bra and jean shorts.

Saypinar said that she'd come to America to "experience freedom" and escape the misogyny she'd faced in Turkey and that she was appalled by the airline's treatment of her, The Independent and CBS DFW reported.

In a follow-up Instagram Story on Monday, Saypinar said that the only "traumatic and offensive" thing about the situation was the way the airline had treated her, not the jean shorts and the crop top she'd worn.

She also said that people sending her hate mail and criticizing her clothing should "deal with your inner issues" and let people live however they want.

"I'm still trying to get over it. Such trauma," she wrote in another Instagram Story later on Monday. "Still feeling maybe I should wear more layers."

When reached for comment about the incident, an American Airlines spokesperson said the airline had "denied boarding for a customer" on a flight from Dallas-Fort Worth to Miami on Thursday.

"As stated in the conditions of carriage, all customers must dress appropriately and offensive clothing isn't permitted onboard our flights," the statement said.

Many commenters on Saypinar's Instagram post on Sunday expressed support. "Sadly the country I served is full of hypocrites and jealousy," one user wrote. "A grown woman cant get on a plane in the US dressed that way but she could in Europe? Where is the freedom in that?"

Saypinar did not respond to a request for comment.

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