Do Moody Looking Models Have A Negative Impact On Sales?

Do Moody Looking Models Have A Negative Impact On Sales?

From couture to the high street, we've gotta talk about the models that brands are using. I love inclusivity and the ongoing drive to be more gender, size and minority inclusive, but why are so many fashion brand websites filled exclusively with models who look at best sad, at worst like they're in a murderous rage? Let's get into it.

happy or sad models which is better

Image by lookstudio on Freepik

We've all had a good laugh at the expense of deranged couture brand Balenciaga and their furious looking models stomping down the catwalk in bin bags and bath towels, literal bath towels.

Outrageous runway looks are to be expected however, and of course, a neutral face means in theory at least, that the focus stays on the clothing, but it's a different thing entirely when the misery mush trend filters down onto the high street.

Just consider the baffling Zara models who, for the last few years, all pose looking like they are either about to burst into tears or are so bored they'd prefer to be anywhere else. I'm pretty certain that their contracts must specify absolutely no smiling allowed and their casting involves being asked to look as miserable as possible.

Big Bud Press

Then there are the cool indie brands, like Big Bud Press, whose brightly coloured clothing and bold prints (think Lucy & Yak but more expensive) are at complete odds with the looks on the faces of their models, most of whom look like they are part way through a bored sigh.

I get the need for some brands to appear dark and edgy, but frankly, if wearing an item of clothing also comes with a side order of resting bored face, I'll pass thanks. I don't want my life to be boring and to make me feel sad. I want my life to be vibrant and happy and I want vibrant people who look like they love life as much as me selling me stuff, not angry, unhappy people who are dead behind the eyes.

It's more than just a style thing

Of course, my default is bold prints and bright colours, but I still go through phases where I eschew the bright and go for dark colours, but, that doesn't mean I wear those clothes with a look of evil malice plastered across my face.

I mean, obviously, I don't walk around constantly grinning like some kind of weirdo, but I'm happy person. I'm optimistic. I like to radiate positivity and whilst I'm not happy all the time (that would be proper weird), I'm generally not scowling and I'm always quick to smile and laugh.

The thought then of browsing a website and seeing a model in an item of clothing who looks like they wish they were wearing anything but that, whilst simultaneously mourning the passing of their dog, is not the vibe.

Sad and sullen are not the sort of shots I find particularly inspiring and are the absolute worst kind of images to entice me into buying something. In fact, miserable models will make me actively avoid buying something.

Is fashion no longer meant for Gen X?

With zero evidence, based only on my own personal feelings and half an hour of Googling in full awareness of confirmation bias being a thing, surely moody models must impact sales?

InsaneLockdownerover on mumsnet says of Zara models;

"Why are they so pissed off? Miserable fucked off b*tch isn't a look i'm trying to achieve."

Perhaps it's my age, I mean I am Gen X afterall. Do younger people think it's uncool to be happy? Do they not buy clothes to make them look and feel good or just simply so they can look cool and even more sullen?

Where did the narrative come from that being cool and edgy means looking miserable? Wouldn't we be sending a more positive message to people if models looked a little bit happier? So many questions.

When I talk about happier looking models, I don't mean cheesy catalogue poses with people grinning ear to ear, laughing, skipping or pointing at something hilarious that we can't see, but let's at least go back to a more neutral look that doesn't evoke such a strong sense of negativity!


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