How do popular advertisements impact fashion?

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Ashley Kannan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I pared the question down from its original form because I think that each of the items mentioned can constitute its own question.  To a great extent, advertising media influences fashion in getting people to communicate about a trend and develop a "buzz" about it in which people seek to mirror the fashion that is being displayed by the advertisers.  For example, the supermodel period in fashion history was completely driven by advertising.  In depicting "super models" as the pinnacle of fashion, advertising made it quite "chic" and socially acceptable for women to aspire to a standard of beauty that was extremely limited.  Fashion designers capitulated to what advertising was making popular, designing clothing and establishing a sense of fashion that created body image challenges for majority of women. It has only been recently in which this issue has been addressed and advertising has responded, at somewhat a glacial pace, by featuring the "plus- sized" model.  Yet, the example of the supermodel craze highlights how advertising is able to impact fashion in creating a need or desire to drive internal subjectivity towards an externalized notion of the good and creating public demand around it.  Through this, advertising can be seen to hold tremendous impact in the determination of fashion.