Aly Raisman has never been ashamed to discuss her body image problems – even in nudes in Sports Illustrated, and frankly telling menstruation in collaboration with Playtex Sport. Now, she takes her physical platform a step further and works with Aerie and Special Olympics gymnast Chelsea Werner to encourage a better bra shopping experience for women of all shapes and sizes.
Reesman, 24, tells people that she used to feel “self-conscious” when she bought a bra and added that her “short and muscular” framework makes the experience challenging.
“I remember walking into other stores when I was young. When I was waiting to try on the bra, I was surrounded by all the same body types. I didn’t look like a model. I was short and muscular, I don’t think my muscles were strong enough. Feminine,” she recalls.
In recent years, Olympic athletes have been blunt about their physical enthusiasm and consolidate themselves as a powerful voice for discussing women’s issues.
The program includes a new bra series and in-store experience designed to encourage a more aggressive bra buying environment. Starting Thursday, the American Eagle brand will launch a new bra collection that includes 36-degree stretch, soft fabric, J-hooks and detachable padded garments.
Aerie also launched a massive shopping overhaul that makes buying bras easier and more comfortable for shoppers everywhere. Overhauls include the company’s “Body Confidence Training Program”, an inspiring fitting room experience, and a new, less invasive way to determine the size of the bra.
“We hope that when a girl or woman puts on her bra, she will remember that her store experience is positive and empowering. When she puts on her bra every morning, she remembers to love her body and focus on her. Like her body,” Raisman, a #AerieReal character model, tells PEOPLE.
“I don’t want any young athletes to walk into the store and feel that their body is not feminine. No matter how you look, your body is unique. If we all have the same size, it would be boring!”
In addition to several everyday women, the event also includes #AerieREAL character models, including Iskra Lawrence and Raisman, and even the highlight Werner, 25 years old. In June, women teamed up to take a photo before the release. The picture shows the smile and confidence that Raisman and Werner play in Aerie lingerie.
“I am very proud,” Werner, who has Down syndrome, tells people that part of the body is active. “I like it. “