Do you remember the terrible “Are you beach body ready?” ads that were EVERYWHERE a few years ago? The Protein World ads showed a thin white woman in a yellow bikini with the caption, “ARE YOU BEACH BODY READY?”.
When the ad campaign ran in 2015, the ads were banned in London, and widely criticized around the world. Here in New York, it was as if the MTA had covered the subways in body-shaming wallpaper.
At the time, plus-size brand Navabi (among others) ran a digital ad in respones. Navabi’s ad showed two plus-size models in Navabi swimwear with the caption, “100% Beach Body Ready.”
Now, the retailer’s has a new ad campaign that continues the brand’s response to Protein World, and its commitment to body positivity. Mirroring the original black-and-white-and-neon-yellow colors of the Protein World ads, the new Navabi ad—displayed on the side of a truck in images from Navabi and plus-size influencer Bethany Rutter—shows three plus-size women in Navabi swimwear (one in a one-piece, two in bikinis) with the caption “WE’RE BEACH BODY READY. Three years on: a little reminder. BeachBodyReady2018.com.”
That website spells out Navabi’s mission statement about the campaign:
We’re also happy that plus size women and plus size style are more visible in the mainstream, and the tiny part we’ve played in that. Ashley Graham was in our first TV ad, now she’s on the cover of Vogue. We’re proud to work with the creator of the first plus size street style book. And we push to make fashion more inclusive for women every day.
… but: the same ‘Beach Body Diet’ stories still fill women’s magazines, year after year, no matter how much progress we think is being made in the media. The same high street brands still only stock up to size 16 (which is the average UK size). And the majority of ads on TV, on the tube, in magazines, still largely show one female body size.
So we decided to rerun those Beach Body ads with 3 different profile models to remind those editors who avoid plus size stories, those advertisers who choose to shoot a single profile of model, those high street buyers who avoid anything over size 16: The world has moved on. Let’s make 2018 the year that every body can be a beach body.
We’ll second that. And here’s BUST’s advice on how to get a beach body: Take your body to the beach. That’s it, that’s all you need to do.
top image: Navabi
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