Aerie's bold decision to ditch Photoshop and other retouching tools in its lingerie ads may be paying off in more than just good karma and public approval.
According to Business Insider, the branch of American Eagle specializing in intimates and sleepwear saw a 9 percent increase in sales in the last quarter. The company announced earlier this year it would leave everything from beauty marks to tattoos in its ad campaigns.
By contrast, while Aerie has experienced a triumphant success by encouraging young women between the ages of 15 and 21 to "get real and think real," Victoria's Secret recently came under fire for the awkward message of its "Perfect 'Body'" campaign.
Many have noted the women featured in Aerie's ads are still models, whose size and shape may not be considered average for the everyday consumer. However, the soft rolls of skin, freckles and stretch marks they proudly display are undeniably more relatable than the unattainable physique of a super model.
Aerie has also photographed women of different body types modeling products for an online sizing guide to help shoppers visualize how any given style might look on someone with their bust size. Not only does this take some of the guesswork out of online shopping, but it also gives the company a chance to promote body positivity across a broader spectrum than just the what's present in its advertising.