Pinterest completes the list of already banned weight-loss ads, as data from the National Eating Disorders Association show a sharp rise in unhealthy eating habits during a pandemic and Pinners embrace radical self-acceptance.

The Advice Line of the National Association for Eating Disorders has reported experiencing a 40% increase in call volume in 2020 related to mental health and eating disorder battles compared to the previous year. In light of the information and recent trends on Pinterest, the forum has updated its policy by banning all ads related to weight loss images and language.

As explained Pinterest:

“As our Pinner community grows, so do topics such as healthy eating, healthy living and fitness tips. We will continue to provide useful and relevant content to those who seek it, and we will ban content that shows, rationalizes or encourages eating disorders and other types of self-harm. keywords related to eating disorders, we block search results and direct them to expert organizations such as NEDA so they can find more resources. Pinterest also offers a variety of emotional well-being activities developed by emotional well-being experts that can be accessed directly from our mobile app and website. “#pinterestwellbeing” to explore gratitude and compassion exercises as well as other interactive practices that can help improve their mood. ”

Pinterest had already banned ads with one of the following:

  • Weight loss or appetite suppressant pills, supplements or other products;

  • Weight loss pictures before and after;

  • Weight loss, such as liposuction or fat burning;

  • Body shame, such as images or language that mocks or disgraces certain body types or appearances; and

  • Allegations of unrealistic cosmetic results

The new policy, which bans all weight-related ads, now includes:

  • All weight loss tongues or pictures;

  • Any recommendations for weight loss or weight loss products;

  • Any language or image that idealizes or denigrates certain body types;

  • Refers to body mass index (BMI) or similar indices; and

  • Products that claim to lose weight in any way that is worn or applied to the skin

Pinterest adds that healthy lifestyles and habits, such as fitness products and services, will continue to be promoted as long as they don’t promote weight loss. This is an important adjustment because many young people were left out of their normal routines and hobbies during the pandemic, which may have been their most important opportunity for healthy exercise. Now, those same young people are feeling the pressure to return to their social circles after almost 15 months of absence or distance, and many are experiencing increased uncertainty about body image.

Elizabeth Thompson, interim CEO of the National Eating Disorders Association, said:

“This necessary step encourages NEDA to prioritize the mental health and well-being of protesters, especially those affected by dietary culture, bodily shame and eating disorders. We hope this global practice encourages other organizations and companies to reflect on potentially harmful advertising messages and create their own meaningful change. “

The move makes sense for Pinterest, where most people jump on the platform to get excited, look for new ideas, and look for positivity. This has long been a unique quality of Pinterest, considered a a positive place for more than 90 percent of people. Pinterest has stated before about how positive online environments have a “halo effect” on the brands present there, which simply means that people are more receptive, more confident and more positive towards them.

Pinterest also introduced trends in searches that support the radical self-acceptance movement of body neutrality:

  • “Healthy thinking quotes” searches have increased x13 over the previous year,

  • “Body neutral” and “stop body shame quotes” have risen five times,

  • Body approval quotes are 7x, and

  • “Self-Loving Fine Art” has grown 63x.

To get more attention to the trend, Pinterest will be showcasing Idea pins from content producers around the world on the Today tab throughout the week to introduce them to “imagining their relationship to their bodies”.

Pinterest has stepped up a strong advocate for brand and consumer safety. Their efforts were recently recognized on the brand side TAG awarded Pinterest a brand safety certificate, which required the platform to meet strict requirements. Other recent efforts by Pinterest include joining the Global Responsible Media Alliance near the end of 2020 and its own Brand Security Center it outlines the platform’s many years of efforts to make Pinterest a safe place for brands.

To encourage other people in the industry to join towards brand and consumer safety, Pinterest emphasizes the importance of proper decision-making communicating their own timeline and commitment to the next steps.

Retrieved from Pinterest newsroom.

Similar trends in body positivity and acceptance have gained momentum on social media platforms, making it impossible for brands to ignore a change in consumer thinking. For companies, this change provides an opportunity to take a close look at their own current messages and join their audience, focusing on the positive at once.

Read the full new policy announcement on Pinterest here.


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