We still have a long way to go…

This week I was thrilled to see the new advertising campaign by Target Australia “Yay for Higher Quality at Lower Prices” which is aimed at “Every Body”. BRAVO, it’s great to see a body that I can easily identify with. For those of you who took the time to comment and give feedback after my blog post back in April about Target Australia’s disappointing offerings to the curvy customer, you’ll be thrilled to know that they ARE listening and I have been consulting with them over the past few months to add value to their already passionate team of people who are working hard on developing a much more deserving range of garments for us, the curvy customer! The marketing has embraced the “every body” approach, and in the near future you will see things evolving with their plus-size range.  This of course takes time, so please be patient. Stay tuned for more on that later…

But then, after the backlash about the “anorexic-looking” model used in the new Dion Lee Designer range launched in Target stores back in July, there was a serious need to take stock and re-focus. So BRAVO, let’s keep it realistic & identifiable.

But when it comes to shameful advertising, in this case fat shaming, my blood boils. I’ve raved on for years about the myriad of reasons that people are overweight, and we all know that it doesn’t just come down to eating unhealthily or not exercising. If that were true, then half the gyms across our fine country would be half empty with everyone at or over a “healthy” BMI not attending (and you’d be surprised how many people fit into that category that aren’t obese) – just saying! (yep, please don’t get me started on what I think about the BMI). A quick google search for fat shaming advertising brings up copious amounts of examples, here’s just two that illustrate my point:

a98569_fat-shaming_5-ashley-madson Because having an obese wife (or husband) means you are justified to be looking to have an affair? NOT!

Or how about this one? 68kgs – the insinuation being she is heavy????????? Really?

So there I was watching TV with my family last night and there right in front of us all is the most incredibly insulting ad I’ve seen for a very long time. I have to admit I’m not a fan of sanitary product advertising, like seriously, you MUST buy it anyway, so what’s the point in advertising it so heavily, AND it only applies to women, and ONLY to women roughly between the ages of 12-55 – so that’s a small percentage of tv viewers. As a mum of two young boys, it was so incredibly annoying to have to explain why a grown man was doing crazy judo chops whilst making weird noises with sanitary pads attached to his arms… sigh.  I digress, so here’s the ad I’m talking about…

Yep, you saw it right. What a disgrace.

“Ugh. That feeling of general grossness when your pad isn’t quite doing it’s job. Say goodbye to blergh with SOFY® BeFresh™”. Not surprisingly, comments have been disabled for the video on YouTube. No need to explain why.

Now if a company fairly, realistically and identifiably represents a product that is suitable for me, I would not hesitate to purchase, and at least try it. But if a company goes out of its way to degrade, make fun of, or even simply alienate me – their target customer – in their marketing campaigns – it’s simple. I WILL NOT PURCHASE…and I WILL call them out on it.

That’s how I feel at aged 44, can only imagine how the teenage girls are feeling about the message that’s being sent here. SHAME!

Effective immediately I WILL NOT EVER purchase product from this company – UNICHARM. I am completely offended at the insinuation that the alter-ego portrayed on the ad is a woman who is menstruating and is significantly larger than her true self – is a lesser version of herself because she is large(r). Let’s face it, having your period is not exactly something we have a choice in, nor as women enjoy anytime, regardless of size, race, height, age. It’s a simple fact. Women menstruate and women suffer from symptoms of menstruating. It’s a biological fact. Deal with it and lets keep the advertising to features & benefits versus fat/thin/whatever shaming. It’s time to move on.

Love your shape!

Janine x

One thought on “We still have a long way to go…

  1. The SOFY ad is truely disgraceful. And not only because it associates the fatter girl to the negative self. You may suffer from cramps, you may feel unbalanced, whatever, but how would a sanitary product help with that? As if menstruation issues were all about being un-fresh. Oh my.

    Conversely, the Ashley Madison ad could be read as fat-shaming, but not unambiguously. Read “scare”, think “scarecrow” … which leads to “Did your wife (who is as scrawny as a scarecrow) scare you tonight? Well, why not have fun with a luscious fat lady? Life is short, have an affair.”
    If you want to see fat-shaming in everything, well, the ad makes it easy for you. But there is more. There might be this little, almost hidden pun, which is kind of clever …
    By the way, I am fat myself and I am all against fat-shaming.

    Kind regards, Ursula

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