Department store Myer is the latest brand to cause a ruckus in the body positive wars after its latest catalogue showed a diverse group of women modelling its underwear range but only fit, chiselled, hairless men flogging the bloke’s briefs.
The catalogue is apparently part of a three-week campaign that includes models of all shapes and sizes, showing the “diversity of the Australian community”.
When you get the body positivity message half right pic.twitter.com/MDxQu9hyw6
— oliyoung (@oliyoung) May 16, 2022
Angry customers – a number of men among them – have taken to social media to kindly explain that males also come in all shapes, sizes and ethnicities.
“Something positive is going on at Myer, but seems half marketing department didn’t get the memo,” one man railed on Reddit.
“We want confident women but the men must always be muscle bound and hairless,” said another man.
“Hairless but never balding,” another added.
A women penned: “The fact they only did half annoys me more than if they had done nothing. It shows they don’t believe in it and are just making light changes to make it look like they are siding with the community.”
A number of males also pointed out it was near impossible to get the physique of many of the models featured.
“Even more than that, it’s these guys jobs to look like that. They can therefore put in the effort required. The rest of us have other jobs which don’t always lend themselves to that kind of body,” one male penned.
One angry mother said she was pleased to see “normal women” on the front page of the catalogue but the “inequality” made her feel ill.
“I don’t want my teenage son growing up feeling pressured by unrealistic body standards. Not every man grows up looking like a jacked action figure – sure, some do, but depicting this body type as the only one to aspire to is toxic,” the mother said.
Others suggested that the jacked, hair-free images of men could also be detrimental to the women they ultimately date.
One mother wrote: “I don’t want my daughters growing up with some warped view of male beauty, or thinking a single body type is the benchmark of normality.”
A dad commented: “My son was nine when he first asked me how to go on a diet.”
However, others defended the campaign, believing that showing overweight models sent a dangerous message around health and obesity.
One mum wrote: “I don’t want my son growing up thinking it is okay to have a beer belly.”
Another added: ‘The problem with all of this is that we show off obese people as the norm, when it is bad for your health.”
Another penned: “Surely there’s a middle ground where models are healthy but don’t have to be super long legged or in the men’s case work out heaps starved them selves for two days before the shoot.”
A spokesperson for Myer told B&T: “Myer takes diversity seriously and has a proud record of embracing and showing the diversity of the Australian community in our advertising – this includes all body types, ages, heights, and backgrounds.
“In our latest campaign we have a diverse range of models across men’s and women’s fashion and you will see the diversity of the models used as this campaign rolls out,” the spokesperson said.
The spokesperson added that the model “Milo” pictured below is regularly used in Myer campaigns.
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