Popular Teen Lingerie Line Has Awesomely Promised To Stop Airbrushing Their Models

aerie real

Photography by John Urbano

In totally unexpected, totally exciting news, American Eagle‘s lingerie store, aerie, has just launched a new ad campaign full of unaltered photos. No airbrushing, no unnecessary editing, no bullshit.

According to Chief Merchandising Officer Jennifer Foyle,

The purpose of ‘aerie Real’ is to communicate there is no need to retouch beauty, and to give young women of all shapes and sizes the chance to discover amazing styles that work best for them. We want to help empower young women to be confident in themselves and their bodies.

The company also announced that it plans to enhance its website with photos of different body types wearing different sizes, so that when a DD girl goes searching for a bra online, she’ll see a DD model wearing it. Okay! It’s kind of depressing that this is news, but I’m totally on board with the idea. It’s completely ridiculous when the same headless, standard sized model is used to sell every product a store has to offer.

One of the new aerie ads, which you can see here, includes a cute little letter to their shoppers:

We think it’s time for a change. We think it’s time to GET REAL and THINK REAL. We want every girl to feel good about who they are and what they look like, inside and out. This means NO MORE RETOUCHING OUR GIRLS AND NO MORE SUPERMODELS. Why? Because there is no reason to retouch beauty.WE think THE REAL YOU IS SEXY.

Of course, this would be even cooler if all the models surrounding the empowering copy weren’t thin, fit, conventionally beautiful, and white-passing– but, you know, choose your battles. I’m really impressed that such a large company is making an effort to stop selling toxic images to their young customers.

While the pessimistic part of my brain keeps saying yeah, but what happens three months from now when they go back on their promises and return to using ultra-airbrushed, ultra-fake photos?, I’m really hoping aerie proves me wrong. Please keep up the awesomeness! Please don’t let us down!

Via Market Watch / Photo: aerie

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    • Samantha Escobar

      “While the pessimistic part of my brain keeps saying yeah, but what happens three months from now when they go back on their promises and return to using ultra-airbrushed, ultra-fake photos?”

      Jezebel will offer $10K for the originals.

    • Lindsey Conklin

      I do love the campaign: “we think the real you is sexy” –and if they stick to that, they just bought a customer!

    • elle

      A) I really hope they stick with this because it is awesome and B) not gonna lie I love Aerie. In my experience VS bra straps stretch out so fast and they just don’t last. My Aerie bras last forever. (I promise Aerie doesn’t pay me.)

    • lilly4439

      A great start, but still SUCH a limited size range. 30 up to 34? Only up to DD? It follows the +4″ bra method which can mean a super loose band and an incorrectly fitting cup, too. I’m glad they’re staring to be more diverse, but there’s a long way to go before we reach the “bra enlightenment” era. Most of their models would probably wear a 26″ or 28″ sized band, so they already don’t really work. :(

      • Muggle

        Ugh, I HATE that +4″ method, too, because it’s literally impossible to find bras when you’re small. I’m a 30B, according to the +4 method I’m “really” 34AAAAA or some impossible shit like that.

      • Vicki

        Official sizes are 30a-b 32aa-d 34aa-dd 36a-dd 38b-dd 40c-dd. And more sizes are always coming through! If your size isn’t represented it probably will be soon! :)

      • drachemitch

        Aerie is a junior’s line. Stop shopping in the kid’s department, honey. You’re embarrassing yourself. Demanding teen lines carry old lady clothes is not an effective tactic.

    • Roxanne Marie Zoltan

      The use of the word “real” next to any representation of women always makes me slightly nervous, even though I don’t think Aerie’s use of it here is necessarily problematic, and I really think this is a step in the right direction (although you’re absolutely right that it’s a bit sad that this is as big a deal as it is).

      I love the quality of Aerie’s products, but I’ve stopped buying their bras because of the limited size range (this is definitely a problem not limited to Aerie, though) :( But I do still have plenty of their undies, swimsuits, and loungewear.

      • Muggle

        Yeah, there’s so little variety in my size because why would someone who’s 30b need anything cute? le sigh.

    • Inna

      I used to work for them here in Israel and got tired of selling so much push up to young girls, there are only 2-3 lightly lined bras, and everything else is “add a bra size! Or two!”, not much of a self esteem booster to teenagers.