UPDATE: According to PR Newswire, Aerie's parent company, American Eagle Outfitters, released a statement on April 1 describing the video below as a "parody" of its #AerieReal campaign. The parody was reportedly meant to publicize the company's commitment to using unretouched photos of male models. A Plus has reached out for comment.
The fashion world these days has increasingly embraced plus-size female models. From swimsuit model Ashley Graham to Aerie spokesperson Iskra Lawrence, full-bodied women are being celebrated by the industry like never before.
While female body positivity is on the rise, men seem to have been left behind in the conversation.
Until recently, that is. IMG Models' new plus-size men's division saw them sign the "brawny" Zach Miko, a first for any modeling agency, to high praise.
Now, underwear brand Aerie's newly launched #AerieMAN campaign is jumping on the plus-size men's bandwagon, celebrating real men in all their beefy, unshaven glory.
The campaign centers around four different men with four very different body types: Doug, Matt, Devon, and Kelvin, each of them introduced in their own video on the Aerie website.
"It feels kind of empowering to know that my flaws are going to be embraced. The real you is sexy," Doug says in his video, adding the campaign tagline in the end.
Aerie's latest campaign is in line with its #AerieREAL goal that strives to present un-Photoshopped, realistic bodies to promote its products. Its foray into male body positivity shows that men, too, can love their bodies just the way they are — abs or no abs.
"[Aerie] is letting guys know they are more than their messy man buns and deeper than six-pack abs," a company representative told A Plus. "It's about loving yourself inside and out!"