I saw this old ad a few days ago and kind of fell in love. I dug the cheeky copy, the sexy model (Shannen Doherty?), and the reminder of a bygone era that knew how to celebrate a curvy physique. I almost made it my Facebook cover photo. Almost.
I got so far as to upload it to my profile page. Then I changed my mind.
Because at the end of the day, this ad was making mid-century thin girls feel the same way that I feel when I flip through a high fashion magazine. Like I’m not good enough as I am. Like the only way I’ll ever “enjoy life” is by taking extraordinary measures to change the way my body naturally expresses healthy balance.
Is it important to encourage self-worth in full-figured women who feel abandoned, shunned, and underrepresented by mainstream media? Yes, absolutely.
But we’re missing the point if we think the answer is ousting the thin ideal to reinstate a curvy one.
While diversity in representation is imperative, the larger issue concerns advertisers who objectify the human body in order to manipulate a vulnerable populace into consuming products that promise to “fix” them.
Let’s move towards changing the dialogue completely, wherein the shape of a woman’s body – whatever it may be – is never used against her to make her feel less than whole.