Lane Bryant #ImNoAngel Campaign Misses the (Stretch) Mark


Lane Bryant‘s #ImNoAngel campaign has gotten lots of attention for its recent diss on Victoria’s Secret’s long-time angels ads. But is it really that different from it’s straight size counterpart? Um, not really.

Why are we so damn excited that six flawless plus models who have been photoshopped to death are representing the plus size woman?

The bodies in that advertisement are young, have round butts, smooth thighs and not a stretch mark in sight. The message it sends is that there is a very specific non-thin body that is ok to have. It has all the markings of the Dove’s Real Beauty ad from 8 years ago, which in my opinion lacked body diversity too.


Haven’t we come further than that? I hoped we had.

It still remains in the hands of grassroots body positive advocates to push the envelope and fight for inclusivity in the real sense of the word.

The #ImNoAngel campaign is a watered down attempt to make big girls feel good about themselves. But no one in that ad could have been bigger than a size 18. That leaves out a very important cross-section of Lane Bryant’s customer base. They carry sizes 14-28. Why aren’t the models in the campaign representative of that diversity?

In a news release, Lane Bryant says its campaign aims to “celebrate women of all shapes and sizes by redefining society’s traditional notion of sexy with a powerful core message: ALL women are sexy.”  Sorry LB, the message did NOT come across that way. You forgot to include women who wear a size 18 or bigger, or who have stretch marks, or cellulite, or any number of so called imperfections.

I can’t be the only woman of size who yearns to see herself reflected in a lingerie ad with fat, dimpled models. I give credit to companies like Curvy Girl Lingerie, who use models of different sizes on their website. It is seeing those images over and over that will really help us to get over our society’s hatred of fat bodies.

curvy girl model2

So excuse me for not being grateful to Lane Bryant for this mediocre attempt to be inclusive. As a company that has served plus size women since 1923, I expected more.

People may accuse me of being harsh, but we are in a time of great change, and I think companies like Lane Bryant often get credit for the work that body positive activists have been doing for years. And frankly, their version lacks the kind of progress we so desperately need.

I challenge Lane Bryant and other mainstream plus size clothing brands to really think outside the box. They can be agents of real change if they so choose. The time is now. The only question is, will they take the leap?


13 thoughts on “Lane Bryant #ImNoAngel Campaign Misses the (Stretch) Mark

  1. Hallelujah sister! I remember being shut down in threads when I was asking why aren’t there models over size 16 in Plus clothing ads, only a year ago. I am for all body positive actions but exhausted by being excluded from such campaigns. I am 5-4 280lbs on the low end of my fluctuating weight. and have yet to see my non hour glass body type heralded in these body positive campaigns. We still have a long way to go and as long as we are all clear on that we can get there. But it certainly won’t happen in silence! ❤ Great post.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I really haven’t paid any attention to the campaign; probably because it was pretty uninspired. It wasn’t until women I know and respect started talking about it, that it got my attention. You make some excellent points. Great post!


  3. Yeeeaassss!!! My feelings EXACTLY. Where’s the cute little round thangs like myself? The stretch marks, apron tummies, flabby arms… older, bigger or non-hour glass shaped with smaller chests and derriers? INCLUDE “US” and then we’re talking diversity!
    #LaneBryant: There’s no “ME” in the “Us.”


  4. this is why I left the whole body positive movement and celebrated each other… too many ideas of what body positive is about…. even other body positive leaders are shaming others and I roll my eyes…. CELEBRATE OUR EXISTENCE…no matter our size, shape, age, height, ethnicity, faith….CELEBRATE EACH OTHER!!!!


  5. Thanks for including Curvy Girl in this. I would LOVE to also see some body types besides hour glasses and also some women over 50. It’s a step, but they’re not quite there yet. Thanks, Pia. Great blog. I am going to share on my page.


  6. So much yes! I’m completely non-impressed that Lane Bryant has made an ad featuring hourglass-shaped smaller fat women and in-betweenies. Plus size clothing companies have been doing that for years–it’s nothing particularly exciting or radical.


  7. Why would you expect plus sizes to not photoshop, include various body types, and be realistic? ‘Straight size’ ads as you put them don’t do any of those things either. Instead of focusing so much on plus or not we should be trying to have REALISTIC models that aren’t photoshopped of ALL sizes.


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  10. There is no one in that picture that is even close to a size 18, 14 and 16, but there is definetly not 18..notta one!! Nice try but no cigar in my books and by the sounds of it there aren’t too many people that are happy with the add campaign. Even Additionelle, there models are probably around a 16-18, but like it has been said before they have been “photoshopped to hell”…I am obviously plus size and I don’t see any real hope or satisfaction looking at these models. They still leave me critiquing my body and wish I looked like them…Nothingbto be proud of at all. With that being said they are all beautiful and brave courageous women for getting down to nothing but their unders, so for that i am grateful bc they’re still not a size 0 but what Inand many others would consider normal/ healthy size…end of rant!!!


  11. The same reason that Carl’s Jr hires food photographers and heavily manipulates their ads. Ads need to create desire. They need to make us want to be like those in the commercial. That’s what Lane Bryant did, they created an ad using models that support their demographic and made them look appealing. I don’t need “real people” instead of models on TV. They’re models. It’s TV. It is supposed to be heightened reality, by its very nature. TV is an entertainment medium, and as it has been since the early days of Greek theatre, entertainment is an artists reflection of reality, not reality itself. So be happy they chose some gorgeous larger ladies to make other larger ladies watching feel better about themselves. A Fruit of the Loom ad with an obese man with backne, moles, tufts of wiry hair, and skid marks isn’t going to sell underwear, even if some of their customers look like that. Time to grow up.


    • Dear Mr. Grownup,

      Your insight into this issue is overwhelmingly impressive. I thought skid marks were totally in! Thanks for clearing that up for me. Oh, and by the way, perhaps you should do just a tiny bit more digging into Lane Bryant’s demographic before waxing poetic on women’s plus size fashion. And just because you have bias and clear hatred for “obese men with backne, moles, tufts of wiry hair, and skid marks” doesn’t mean we all do. You are clearly a victim of our media’s successful efforts at making people feel less than with half-hearted attempts at inclusivity. With your attitude, progress will never be made. It’s a good thing women like me are spearheading this movement instead of grownups like you.

      Sincerely yours,
      (A Badass Fat Bitch)


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