There are a multitude of advertisements online (like these the one on the left) that are viewed millions of times a day that depict a sad looking, overweight female or male standing next to an image of that same male or female person in “fit” shape looking ecstatic to finally be the “ideal weight”. Sometimes these images are Photoshopped and most of the time the person in the “After” photo isn’t even the same person. The person in the “Before” picture usually looks as if they had run a mile and hadn’t slept in days; on the other hand, the person in the “After” picture is shown “dolled-up” and with a body that’s posed in a different position that accentuates the “thinning” down of said person. Another difference between the images is the fact that a change of clothes can really make a person look bigger or smaller. In the “Before” image, the person can be wearing a horizontal striped sweater (which usually accents the wideness of a person), while in the “After” image, the person can be wearing all black (which in turn can hide certain curves and shapes). The person in this image (below) is wearing white underwear and looks as if he just woke up from a coma.
These advertisements obviously target the overweight for being overweight by labeling the first picture as “Before Our Product!” and the second picture as “After Our Product!”. They want people to feel bad about being overweight. Once said person feels terrible about their weight, that person looks into the advertised product to try and change who they are to be more accepted in society; or so they think. All of these advertisements are constantly going after insecurities of the many to take advantage of a potential sale. Will advertising like this eventually change due to people accepting who they are, or will these advertisements always see the light of day due to the attack on insecurities? Is it smart advertising or is it controlling the idea of normalcy?