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Levi’s ass-inine idea of equality

Date: September 23, 2010 | Posted By: Stacey

All asses were not created equal. Really? Because it's hard to tell from this photo.

ASS.

Got your attention, didn’t I?

I’m guessing Levi’s was pretty proud of the final tagline for their new Curve ID jeans: “All asses were not created equal.” Nothing makes you do a double-take like the blatant use of “ass” in advertising, right?

But I digress. The real story behind the company’s latest ad campaign is what people are saying about its message.

The ad under fire portrays three slim, Caucasian models, apparently showcasing how well Levi’s new jeans complement their vastly varying “curves.” Uh, really? I know I’m woefully nearsighted, but this has got to be a mistake. Where exactly are the curves in this photo?

Plenty of bloggers have already torn apart the hypocritical campaign, which really, would have been a great idea, had Levi’s actually demonstrated the jeans’ worth on anyone above a sample size.

As Jen Phillips at Mother Jones points out, “They could have used full-figured women or at least a model of color, but instead they chose to use slender models to demonstrate they understand how to fit American women who are on average 5’4″ and 160 lbs.” So true.

Levi's web site uses three more pin-thin models to convey a spectrum of "curves."

And what about the fact that the jeans only come in sizes 2-14 and only fit waists between 22-34 inches? I don’t know about you, but I’ve met plenty of women above a size 14 who would love to finally find some curve-flattering denim. And I would assume there aren’t quite as many with 22-inch waists who are seeking out jeans to accommodate their backsides (though I know there must be some).

Basically, I feel duped. My first reaction to the ad was a positive one. The bold tag line did catch my attention, and it made me believe a major clothing manufacturer actually recognized the fact that (shocker!) bodies come in different shapes. It wasn’t until I talked it over with friends, family, and colleagues that I realized the ad is totally off-base.

But I want to know what you all think. Is the Levi’s Curve ID campaign a step in the right direction, or is it misleading consumers to think these three variations on thin are actually curvy?

– Michelle Konstantinovsky is a student at UC Berkeley’s Graduate School of Journalism and an avid admirer of shiny objects and preteen entertainment. It would be nice if you visited her website: www.michellekmedia.com. Also, she may learn to use Twitter more effectively if you follow her @michelley415.




What Do You Think?

2 Responses to Levi’s ass-inine idea of equality

  1. Teresa Jennings on 09-23-2010

    This campaign is so disappointing. If it were true to what it's saying, it would be awesome! Women do come in different shapes and sizes, but according to this ad, these three body shapes are the only ones worth having. Honestly, I'm never buying Levi's again! I'm a size 10 and I have awesome curves! I'm short, stout, and very healthy! Levi you aren't good enough for this ass!
  2. Tweets that mention A B O U T – F A C E — blog » Levi’s ass-inine idea of equality -- Topsy.com on 09-24-2010

    [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Melanie Klein and M. Konstantinovsky, About-Face. About-Face said: Levi’s ass-inine idea of equality http://about-face.org/blog/archives/4045 @feministfatale, @motherjones [...]