• Sun, Dec 11 2011

Can We Please Just Stop With The Word “Skinny”?

bethenny frankel skinnygirl margaritaThe single word “Skinny” attracts a load of consumers. Slap the word “skinny” on a package and the product blows up like the Fourth of July. This marketing ploy is geared to make you feel like you can enjoy the indulgence without adding the calories. But, personally I feel it’s just another distorted body image promotion that boosts the unacceptable “nothing tastes as good as being skinny feels” campaign.

Everything from jeans and lattes to hair products are labeled with the marketing buzzword, and I’m over it. “Skinny” has become a euphemism for “good”, and it just further fuels our nation’s distorted beauty and body ideals. Thin doesn’t equal beautiful and it doesn’t mean healthy, either. The fact of the matter is, most of these “skinny” food products are over-processed, contain artificial sugars and sweeteners, and may not even be “healthy” at all. Drinking “skinny water” will totally make you thinner right? Wrong. Last time I checked, water is required to hydrate our bodies, not a weight-loss supplement.

Here are some of the most ridiculous “skinny” advertising campaigns,  and why we should get just get over the deceiving buzzword.

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  • Emily

    I like that often Blisstree tries to be health-focused and body positive with articles such as this (and that you consider veganism something to aspire to). But you also fall victim to things that you scold–to the side as I write this there is a chubby woman pinching her gut, talking about “banishing belly fat.” Thanks for this article, please use this as the mindset of everything you publish.

    • Briana Rognlin

      Hey Emily – thanks for your comment. Being a body positive health site definitely means walking a fine line, and feedback is always much valued and apprecaited.

      Ultimately, we do want to help women manage their health in a healthy way. To us, Natasha Turner’s column about weight loss/management (that you referred to in your comment) is empowering because it actually gives realistic and helpful info, instead of tips that won’t work and will leave you feeling frustrated, or worse, encourage unhealthy dieting habits. And her advice isn’t based on trying to look like a celebrity or model; she’s promoting weight management from the premise of feeling and functioning at your best. Study after study shows that keeping belly fat down is taking a big step towards reducing risk factors for heart disease and cancer; to me, that’s a good reason to have posts on our site about how to manage belly fat.

  • Hannah

    Interesting. I’ve noticed it too, more so in conversation. I remember my sister feeing jealous of this girl. I pointed out that the girl was very rude and had a pretty bad reputation. Response? “Yeah, but she’s skinny.” She uses it as a substitute for “healthy” pretty often too, and I know she’s not the only one.

    I couldn’t think of another word for skinny jeans that didn’t involve the word slim. Any suggestions?

  • Eileen

    I don’t mind the “skinny jeans” appellation because it’s the jeans that are skinny. Although “slim-fit” would probably work just as well.

    And don’t get me started on the Starbucks stuff. The amount of sweetener in, say, a skinny peppermint mocha is ridiculous. Get the regular thing and just ask for fewer pumps!