Dove started and now American Apparel are leading the search for normal, everyday women in their advertising campaigns. Recently Hugo Boss opened up their facebook group to find new citizen models and now desgners around the world are following suit.
Forget citizen journalists, the newest strand of the everyday person becoming a professional over night is citizen models.
Shattering the perfected illusions of photoshopping the brand, along with Benetton and L.e.i jeans (Walmart’s own), have all announced new citizen model ad campaigns.
American Apparel does not conform to regular standards and in keeping with its ultra sexual ethos, it is holding search for the best bottom in the world. The brand are looking for the new ‘face’ of their intimates and briefs lines and potential models across the globe can email in pictures of their behinds, but be warned these will be rated and commented on by visitors of the brand’s website.
Winners will then be flown to LA for a photo shoot and will appear in an online campaign and receive $300 in AA’s clothes (which will probably just stretch to one of their ultra-scene body con sculpture dress).
Benetton’s It’s my Time campaign takes a slightly more routine route. The autumn/winter campaign will include real models who are able to submit videos and photos to the website until March. This move by the Italian designer aims to match personal style with personality to create models who will ultimately sell more clothes.
And the last company jumping on this online-real-model-bandwagon is L.e.i jeans. Who? exactly. This brand is available to US fashionistas only and is searching for three model citizens to star in its next campaign. As with the other brands, L.e.i is searching for real models to upload pictures which will then be voted on by a panel of judges including Chanel Iman and Teen Vogue editor-in-chief, Amy Astley.
By launching these three similar campaigns the designers are showing they are prepared to feature real women in their campaigns but also tapping into a huge money making scheme. People are tired of over air brushed models and these citizen model searches can cut the cost of a PR agency and also encourage more people to shop.
It is unclear if this fashion phenomenon is due to financial constraints or the increasingly criticism over size zero models, the fact is clear that most labels are increasingly relying on social media and active participation to boost revenue.