The Real Student Body

What is "real" beauty? In 2004, the Dove corporation launched its campaign for Real Beauty, with advertisements featuring women of all ages and body types. The campaign attempted to challenge the unrealistic beauty standards seen in the media today, and emphasized that true beauty comes in all shapes and sizes.

Inspired by Dove's efforts, in 2008, Bradley University students launched their own "Real Student Body" project. Ten courageous young men and women volunteered to pose as models for a campus-wide poster campaign designed to promote the acceptance of the human body in all its forms. 

While the posters certainly raised some eyebrows around campus, they also raised some important questions:

  • What is real beauty?
  • How can we feel good about our bodies when billions of dollars every year are invested in advertising designed to make us hate the way we look?
  • What can each of us do in our everyday lives to change unrealistic beauty standards and promote body acceptance?

Send your answers to