Advertising Distorts Perception Of Self Image Essay

2046 words - 8 pages

Men and women view themselves differently and both men and women are concerned about how others view them. This leads to both genders becoming increasingly conscientious of what they eat, how much they eat, and how often they should exercise. Often times both struggle with making these changes so they look for an easy way to see the results they desire. Advertising agencies have noticed this stigma and taken advantage of both sexes insecurities about self-image. This can be seen in the Hydroxycut ad from 2008, and the SuperPump 250 ad in 2010. These two ads highlight the benefits of the products, while pinpointing the insecurities of the consumers. Although there are similarities between the two genders concerns regarding self-image, ultimately men tend to want a more muscular look and women typically just want to lose weight and look thin.
The Hydroxycut ad features an attractive woman for this product, which claims it is ‘Americas #1 Weight-Loss Supplement.’ The setting is on a tropical beach and the woman is standing in the sand near the ocean in a red two piece bikini. There is a quote that says “I lost 39 pounds. Fast with Hydroxycut!” Below is Gillian Risebury from Collinsville, Illinois’ testimony to the effectiveness of the product. She says before she took the product she felt unhappy and uncomfortable wearing a bikini, but after seeing Hydroxycut’s effectiveness in other users she decided to try it. After she took this supplement she reported losing 39 pounds and seven inches off her waist in 13 weeks. She relates that she is a testament to the effectiveness of the product and now she feels comfortable at the beach and at pool parties. Moving down the page is a before and after picture of her showing her significant progress. Then in small print a statement is made ‘Results will vary. Individual combined Hydroxycut caplets with sensible diet and exercise.’
As the viewer moves down the page another statement is made ‘Used by Millions to Lose Weight Fast.’ Displayed under this is an open water bottle and the traditional caplet version of the product with a preview of the new instant drink packets, which states ‘Just mix, drink and start losing weight!’ Next to this is Dr. Nick Evans, M.D. who says “Based on the scientific studies of the key ingredients in Hydroxycut caplets and my personal experience using the product, I would recommend Hydroxycut to healthy adults wishing to lose weight.” Also the heading above the doctor reads ‘Clinically proven ingredients help you lose up to 4.5 times the weight than diet and exercise alone.’ Toward the bottom of the page there is a list of places where the product is available. At the very bottom of the page in noticeably smaller type is a study that was conducted by scientists to show the results of subjects who took Hydroxycut and those that took a placebo over an eight week study. The top of the ad primarily focuses on Risebury’s testimonial and as the viewer moves down the page the clinical...

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