aerie, the lingerie division of American Eagle, is taking a step in the right direction towards slashing the idealized definition of beauty.
The brand, whose target demographic covers young teens to college women, is taking an oath to stop retouching their models in ads and in-store displays. They’re letting everything hang out— boobs, tattoos, bellies and butts— and celebrating the variation, and beauty, of every girl’s body.
Not only will we see a change in their campaign models, but also the online shopping experience. When browsing the different bra styles on their website, you will be able to see a different model for each cup size. So if you’re searching for a Double-D bra, you’ll see a girl who actually fills out a Double-D bra. I mean, how many times have you taken something into the fitting room only to be disappointed that it looks completely different on you than it did on the model? Now young women will be able to get a more realistic depiction of the fit.
aerie hopes that by taking the leap and leaving “reality” in their lingerie ads, young women can feel more comfortable in their own skin. It’s been proven that the depiction of beauty seen in media greatly affects the confidence of young women. The models are certainly more relatable than the impossibly flawless VS Angels, don’t you think?
Now, I hate to be the “yeah but…” person, but I really do wish aerie included ladies of different body types in their #aerieREAL campaign, like we saw last year in the Debenhams Look Book. We see slender, athletic, and busty girls in these photos but none with so much as a pooch for a belly. However, I extremely appreciate the effort they are displaying in eradicating impossible beauty standards that young women are held to… many of which are are caused by digitally transforming models into someone even the models themselves don’t look like.
I truly hope that more US brands follow in aerie’s footsteps and start embracing the diversity that exists when it comes to bodies, and normalize them. I’ve always been a fan of American Eagle (they were the only “cool” brand of jeans that I could comfortably fit into when I was heavier) and this makes me want to support their company even more. I also hope that aerie follows through on their promise of not retouching their models throughout later campaigns once the hype dies down.
Maybe one day, having a campaign like this will be normal. In the words of aerie, “There is no reason to retouch beauty. The real you is SEXY.”
What do you think of the aerie campaign?
Images courtesy of aerie.com