Sex can sell just about anything so it’s no wonder that the provocative tactic is usually employed to market even the most mundane products. But while the strategy is typically guaranteed to if not be successful, then at least drop some jaws, Coke’s attempt to promote a new milk product has done neither — and, in fact, angered many.
The soft drink company, which is currently launching a new line of premium milk, has created ads using pin-up girls wearing the beverage (very literally). “Drink what she’s wearing,” reads one poster. “Better milk looks good on you,” says another.
"VERY excited about all our sexy billboards that are promoting the launch,” a blog post on fairlife.com states. “It’s just our way of showing the world how provocative milk can be!” It continues: “Oops, we got distracted by the pinup girls… that can happen!”
But while the advertisements have been getting flack, the art (the women wearing the dairy produce) has actually received quite a bit of praise in the past. The models rocking liquid dresses are from a series shot by Jaroslav Wieczorkiewicz in 2013. Surprisingly enough, the fluid looks aren’t all digitally manipulated. The London-based photographer layered about 200 frames to different areas of the models body. This means each girl was doused in gallons upon gallons of milk to capture the perfect moments.
Yet Wieczorkiewicz’s innovative work being co-opted to push a product has started a larger conversation about using women’s bodies in advertising. “This is just the latest in a never-ending stream of examples of women’s bodies used as advertising fodder with scant regard for relevance or originality,” Laura Bates writes in the Guardian.
On social media many are airing their reactions:
Perhaps most interestingly, the Twitter account Everyday Sexism is culling together photos people are sharing where women are seemingly unnecessarily promoting merchandise. From bacon and water to cigarettes and maid services, the list of companies using a woman’s image for monetary gain is ostensibly never ending.