Here we go again
Another ad promoting the perfect ‘beach body’ and defining it by parameters that most women can’t attain naturally, let alone healthfully. Dietary supplement maker Protein World is getting international publicity for an ad that’s gone viral – and not in a way they intended.
“Are You Beach Body Ready?”
This company’s latest ad is aimed at defining a woman’s ‘beach body’ by an image of a slender (most likely photo-shopped) woman next to weight loss pills.
In a time when weight stigma is one of the primary contributors to eating and exercise disorders – ads like these only add fuel to the fire among girls and women of all ages who increasingly define themselves by the size of their bodies as they compare themselves to these images.
It’s not like these types of ads are anything new – but the tolerance for these ads is shifting. Instead of blind acceptance, women are rising up against the perpetuation of the insanity around a woman’s body size and how society then defines the woman’s worth as a result.
We’ve had ENOUGH.
Defining a woman’s level of beauty and worth by her size is anything but original – it’s tired. It’s so, well, – yesterday.
And we have clearly – had it. In fact, an online petition aimed at getting this ad pulled from circulation was created to enable us to BE the change we want to see in the world – and how fast it’s gone viral is proof in point.
In 4 days petition signatures went from 100 to 20,000 signatures. 5 days later – it’s at 52,365 signatures.
These stats are encouraging….and to quote Claire Mysko, director of programs for NEDA (National Eating Disorder Association); “With social media, it’s become so much easier to shame brands for doing it wrong.”
Speaking of NEDA, they recently openly supported the American Eagle Aerie line because they’ve launched a photoshop-free campaign that encourages women to accept the real ‘you’.
A study showed that almost 70% of American elementary school girls are influenced by magazine pictures as far as how they define ideal body type, and almost 50% say the photos make them want to lose weight. ENOUGH.
Brands Helping to Shift the Norm
So – let’s also shine a light on who is helping to turn the tides.
The petition is one way, Aerie brand’s non-photo shopped images is another, and who hasn’t seen a Dove commercial that leaves you teary eyed and a bit closer to center around what is truly important?
Lastly check out this video which is a tongue-in-cheek response from Lane Bryant to lingerie conglomerate Victoria’s Secret ads.
The scaffolding is finally crumbling and what defines beauty, sexy and a beach body for that matter – is becoming more inclusive instead of exclusive of ALL shapes and sizes.
Like the rapidly increasing popularity of the online petition has proven – one action, one voice – can set off a landslide that creates a new collective, a new thought that is aimed at the acceptance and benefit of ALL of us.