American Eagle’s lingerie line Aerie won’t retouch images used in its new lingerie advertisements. The brand left wrinkle marks, stomach rolls, blemishes, tattoos and moles. It helps show girls that they can still feel good about wearing lingerie and not have to look like a Victoria’s Secret Angel.
Everywhere you look, the media sends images to young girls and women of how they should look and what size they should be. Celebrities, size zero models and women in advertisements give an unrealistic expectation to women of how they should look.
Women need positive role models and healthy, curvy models to whom they can look up. There is too much pressure from the media to be perfect, skinny and flawless.
Commercials from clothing corporations such as Abercrombie & Fitch, American Apparel and Tom Ford use ads with beautiful partially nude men and female models.
Tom Reichert comments in Business Insider, “As long as people desire to be attractive to others, and as long as people desire romance, intimacy, and love and all the wonderful feelings they involve, advertisers can show how their products help meet those needs and desires. Whether we like it or not, products play a role in society’s intimacy equation.”
This causes body image problems and a path to unattainable perfection. The ideals of beauty constantly pushed are inescapable for some women.
Recently, advocates pushed for women in advertisements and the media to be curvier.
Earlier this year, H&M; launched a campaign to show that they were on board with a fuller body image on their ads. Jennie Runk made headlines when H&M; featured a plus-size model for their swimsuit line.
At size 14, Runk received very positive headlines. The New York Daily News quoted a commenter saying, “So much better than a stick-thin bag of bones,” and “Hope other retailers follow this and have more real women modeling their clothes.”
Fuller size models in advertisements such as H&M; give consumers a more positive body image and they can see women modeling clothes that they can relate to. They can realize it’s OK to not be a size 2 and that fuller is still sexy.
Jennifer Lawrence said it best in her interview with Newsnight, “We have the ability to control this image that young girls are going to be seeing. … Girls see enough of this body that they will never be able to obtain. … It’s an amazing opportunity to rid ourselves of that in this industry.”
The media and clothing corporations encourage people that by buying their clothes, they can look like the skinny models and celebrities they see in the advertisements. It’s time that they begin to understand women will respond positively to models that are normal sizes and have flaws.
Reach the columnist at Kassidy.McDonald@asu.edu or follow her on Twitter @kassmcdonald