Since the early times women have been portrayed as provocative beings. Many products are sexualized to catch the consumer’s attention. Sex appeal is often utilized in advertising, mostly involving females. In the 1930s and 1980s we see specific examples of sex appeal of women used in advertisements. In ‘Think of her as your mother’ by Peter Lyth, he discusses how American airline stewardess were sexualized to encouraged frighten passengers to consider the airline. For this article they analyzed specific advertisements in which revealed their marketing efforts to appeal more passengers to their airline. I have attached one of these American airline advertisements please see page 4. Even when a product has nothing to do with sex, producers always find a way to include sex appeal to attract more consumers. For example Sean John’s commercial for the scent ‘Unforgivable’ included lots of sex appeal. Throughout the commercial many words including sex passion seduction and honesty were brought up.
The individuals in the commercial were displaying promiscuous behavior. They were also exhibiting sex appeal. The ad was intended to advertise cologne but they intentionally included sex to sell their product. We tend to see more sex appeal in products that are advertised to men. For example alcohol, cars, fragrances, are some of the many products that use this approach. Partially nude women tend to be a main focal point in these advertisements. Sex appeal in advertisement can also have a negative effect on consumers. Many women who see these advertisements may become hyper-critical of themselves because of the high standards that are shown, and women are supposed to meet those expectations. This hyper-critical behavior can lead to many other harmful situations such as low self-esteem, eating disorders, and low self-confidence. Women look at advertisements and they tell them that they should be perfect but in all reality no one is perfect. Women have been portrayed in promiscuous ways. Many producers use women and sexual appeal to sell products, not realizing the negative effect it has on women. As long as consumers continue to feed into the sex appeal women will continue to be degraded and the negative outcomes will be prevalent.
Lyth, Peter. “‘Think Of Her As Your Mother’: Airline Advertising And The
Stewardess In America, 1930-1980.” Journal Of Transport History 30.1 (2009): 1-21. Academic Search Premier. Web. 22 Feb. 2012.