About a year ago, clothing brand American Eagle’s underwear line Aerie stopped retouching photos of their models. The results were beautiful.
After putting the nix on retouching, quarterly comparable sales for Aerie were up 9%. The next quarter, Q3 of 2014, up only 3% in comparable sales. But then in the next two quarters? Up 13% and 12%. Coincidence?
The brand uses the hashtag #RealAerie to let its fans know that the photos remain unretouched. Featured model Iskra Lawrence (above) says: “I love my body and really don’t see myself as a size but more of a shape.”
The photos show that there’s no such thing as a “perfect” body; ALL bodies have moments of realness. And there’s nothing wrong with showing that. That’s what I love about them and what I love about this campaign.
Aerie CEO Jennifer Foyle said in 2014: “There is no need to retouch beauty.”
And to their credit, in case the model bodies don’t do it for you, the brand has also posted photos of non-model, everyday women using the hashtag #RealAerie to spotlight the glory that is the unretouched photo on all types of shapes and sizes.
Frankly, no one needs Aerie to tell them that it’s OK for them to have a body and to love it without a filter. But if you ask me, more brands could get OUT of the game of body shaming and INTO the game of body positivity like Aerie.
And if Aerie is any example, body positivity is profit positivity.