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Lingerie brand Aerie celebrates people with disabilities in inclusive campaign

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Lingerie brand Aerie has been praised on social media for its inclusive new campaign featuring a diverse group of models with disabilities.

The brand, which doesn’t airbrush its models, added the photos to its product pages this week.

One of the featured models, student and YouTube star Abby Sams, posted a sample of the photos on Twitter, saying: “Look at this disability representation people!”

In 2014 the brand began a campaign called Aerie Real, in which they promised not to airbrush or re-touch models.

The campaign has continued with its newest group - 57 women of diverse ages, ethnicities and body shapes.

As well as featuring Abby, who uses a wheelchair, the campaign included women with arm crutches, an insulin pump, and an ostomy pouch, as well as conditions such as vitiligo.

20-year-old Abby said: “Aerie had a contest on social media for their fall campaign and you had to say what Aerie Real meant to you.

“As someone who has never really seen disability or chronic illness represented I told them that Aerie Real should mean beauty in all shapes, sizes, ethnicities, and abilities.”

Abby said: “Its honestly meant the world to be part of this campaign. All the other models have really come together and become a family.

“We all talk and support each other. It was like I gained a bunch of best friends instantly.

“It really blew up and I’m just glad it’s getting more coverage. That people out there can see the work that Aerie is doing and see the models that are making it happen.”

(Aerie/Andrew Buda and Alex Albeck)

Abby said: “Disability was rarely represented when I was younger and even now as an adult I’ve seen maybe two companies use disabled models.

“I showed up and was blown away by all these amazing women with amazing stories representing so many different communities.”

Since the products were added to Aerie’s website, Twitter has been flooded with positive comments, many praising the brand for its diverse representation of body types and disabilities.

Jennifer Foyle, Aerie’s global brand president, said: “As a brand, Aerie has been a leader in empowering women and celebrating inclusivity and body positivity since our launch of Aerie Real in 2014.

“Our newest bra models are part of our brand’s ongoing commitment to show real, authentic and un-retouched women, who are at the core of everything that we do.”

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