4 minutes ago
I saw this in Aerie at the Westfarms Mall on December 28, 2018. I had just purchased four pairs of their #Chill leggings (for $7.50 each because they were on #sale for 50% off!) and was on my way out of the store when I saw a giant poster hanging before me. What caught my attention was the leg brace on the model to the right. Why had I never seen an ad like this before?! It seems silly that it was such a shock to see a model with an injury. So, I snapped a picture and continued my post-Christmas shopping spree. Weeks later, I am still thinking about how exciting it was to see such an inclusive and realistic advertisement by such a famous company. Why haven’t other brands thought of this? According to the National Hospital Ambulatory Medical Care Survey, roughly 17 million Americans visit emergency departments for lower extremity injuries (leg, knee, ankle, & foot) per year! Unfortunately, I have been one of them. With this being such a common occurrence, how come we see hardly any representation in the media? This doesn’t just apply to leg injuries, but virtually all forms of disabilities! After doing some research, I discovered that American Eagle’s underwear brand, Aerie, is known for including underrepresented models in their marketing campaigns. Unlike most underwear/lingerie brands, who only feature models who are so thin they could dodge raindrops, Aerie is a leader in the #BodyPositivity movement. This means they celebrate bodies of all shapes, sizes, ethnic backgrounds, abilities, and conditions. Furthermore, they pride themselves on only using untouched, original photos. This began as part of their #AerieReal campaign in 2014 which resonated with consumers all around the world.