After Calvin Klein’s unveiling of Justin Bieber as the new face (and package) of the brand, it has seen an unrelenting backlash that many could have predicted. So is this a fatel mistake of Calvin Klein’s marketing masterminds or is it a clever publicity stunt?

3Justin Bieber for Calvin Klein ©

It’s often said that “any publicity is good publicity” and in some cases such as this one, it could be true. Calvin Klein has been a household name since it was founded in the late 60s – considering it’s the go-to gift for the man in your life who simply won’t spend £30+ on a pair of boxers for himself, it’s really no surprise how established the are, but in today’s fashion industry our options have never been so vast; many other brands are offering the same products for cheaper. So could Calvin Klein could be clutching at straws in order to put themselves back on top, but all the while damaging their years of carefully constructed brand identity.


1Justin Bieber for Calvin Klein ©

The recruitment of Justin Bieber as the model and name that will be attached to the brand is a strange one. On one hand he is a worldwide superstar, one that will force the brand onto a younger audience and ultimately prove profitable. But on the other hand Bieber hasn’t exactly been the type of role model I would have thought a high profile brand would pair themselves with – he’s not shy about causing controversy and testing the limits.

Last week it seemed Bieber found himself ‘exposed’ when his pre-photoshop images were leaked online. Now I use exposed and leaked with reluctance, as neither are true; what IS true however is the fact that every model and celebrity is edited and photoshopped in some way when they are photographed for editorial purpose. After viewing the before and after images side by side, I can honestly say that it’s some of the most modest editing I’ve seen a celebrity endure, if you need convincing there’s an infinite amount of proof and information all over the internet that’s sure to change your mind. So why have Bieber’s photos caused so much backlash? I found nothing shocking about Bieber’s unedited photos –  and as long as I’m being honest, I’m not ashamed to say I preferred them.

Screen Shot 2015-01-16 at 12.29.40The before and after of Justin’s, ahem, package


Social Media has its say on the un-edited shots

However you take the Calvin and Bieber pairing, you can’t ignore the recent buzz surrounding the brand. Whatever their intention, it seems to have worked and I’m sure they’re both too busy cashing in to take any real notice of the negativity surrounding it. Let us know your thoughts on the recent marketing campaign!

By Talia Maguire

About the author

Talia has a keen interest in all aspects of media; you’ll find her writing about anything from feminist issues, alternative fashion trends and the hottest films and television programmes of our time. She’s our resident vegetarian who isn’t scared to take a bite out of trending topics and get to the bones of it all. Talia loves photography, caffeine and baking, but you’ll also find her on our Semple Magazine photoshoots filming behind the scenes. And if you’re ever in need of a funny viral video to get you through your working week, she’s your girl!

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