Nobody’s perfect. That’s the theme of advocacy group Pro Infirmis’s latest video promoting self acceptance and loving your own individual, unique body. While this concept isn’t new–we just saw Dove’s “Real Beauty Sketches” take the top spot on the 20 most shared ads of the year–the twist Pro Infirmis puts on this video is truly touching.
Most people at some point or another in their lives have experiences some sort of body image problems. There’s a reason why the beauty and fashion industries are multi-billion dollar industries. And there are many of us who feel dread at the sight of those perfect models and mannequins in the windows of every department store, because we think that we’re not perfect enough for those clothes to look that good on us. Now imagine that you are missing a limb or have a disease that distorts your body, and consider how much more difficult it is to see these perfect figures that idealize what the human body should look like.
In the video, radio host and film critic Alex Oberholzer, Miss Handicap 2010 Jasmine Rechsteiner, athlete Urs Kolly, actor Erwin Aljukić and blogger Nadja Schmid are the models to help create new mannequins. Professionals take their measurements and craft new models specifically based on their unique bodies, and then these new mannequins replace the traditional ones in storefront windows displaying the latest fashions for the International Day of Persons with Disabilities in Switzerland. The most touching moment of the video is seeing the models’ reactions to their mannequins.
I think that this ad is really advocating self-acceptance rather than change in the industry. I know some people may argue that what we need is to make all storefront mannequins look more realistic, because it’s the media that causes these self image problems in the first place. I think, though, Pro Infirmis’s goal is to show that everyone is beautiful, it just takes someone special to show it to us.