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This advertisement is made by one of the most popular private gym brands in Japan called RIZAP. They are especially known for their intensive workout and selective meal plans for those who want to lose weight drastically in a short period of time. People go to gym for different purposes such as to stay healthy, to feel good, and most commonly to stay fit or to lose weight. This advertisement can be appealing and motivational for those who are committed to lose weight. However, I also found this advertisement to be misleading as it leaves the audience with a certain image of how women’s bodies should appear.
On the left, one can see a female model looking insecure about her body style because she is not “skinny enough.” And on the right side, one can see the same model being more confident and happier with her skinnier body, which leads the audience to think that “you must be skinny to be attractive and happy.” In addition, the letters next to the model says, “Get rid of your old body style” in Japanese, which could lead the viewers to think that her old body shape was not attractive enough.
There are many factors that can make a woman feel self-conscious and body shape could be one of such factors. However, women should be able to feel comfortable and confident regardless of their body shapes and appearances. Everyone is attractive in their own distinct ways, and definition of beauty should differ from one to another. Hence, I believe this particular advertisement which illustrates a typical image of how attractive women should look like is very misleading and not appropriate.
In the jammed version of the advertisement, I have made two changes. At first, I added more images of women representing different races and various body shapes to illustrate more diversity. It is understandable for RIZAP to adopt a Japanese model given the fact that majority of their clients are Japanese. However, by adding images of women with different racial backgrounds, I wanted to emphasize that there is not a single definition of beauty and it is natural for everyone to look differently. In addition, showing women with various body shapes allows the audience to accept their own body shapes and eliminate the typical image of “you have to be skinny to be attractive and happy.”
Secondly, I changed the catch phrase from “Get rid of your old body style” to “Just the way you are.” The intent of this change is to encourage women to stay authentic. With all available information released via various social media platforms, it is easy for people to become overly conscious about self-images and appearances. Being true to oneself, feeling comfortable and confident about one’s self-image are important factors to stay healthy both physically and mentally.
To avoid misunderstanding, I am not against women who make tremendous effort to work out in order to lose weight. In fact, I am very supportive of such person who works hard to attain her goals. The real aim of the jammed versioned advertisement is to prevent people from becoming mislead by certain public images of beautiful women and to make people aware that there is no right or wrong way to define beauty. If one can realize that any woman can be beautiful just by being true to herself, then I think the real purpose of this advertisement is met.