Imagine taking a stroll along the aisle of a perfume section at a supermarket outlet, and suddenly coming across a rather peculiar advertisement. There, perched ever so niftily on the shelf, is this cologne; however, the human model on the advert is an average looking person with a noticeable bulging physique, in a typical casual attire, without flaunting any kind of makeup, and just gazing out to the oncoming customer with the usual "buy-this-product" look. What happens next is quite self-explanatory. Anyone who has ever been exposed to the popular media will do a double take, and may not be faltered into buying that particular cologne for all the right reasons; in this case, because of the oddity of the portrayal of the model in the advertisement itself. The obvious issue here is not the product, rather the average Joe model. In this case, the standard notion of what and who a model should be is subjected to disjunction with the weight of the corresponding product, and hence, a state of confusion comes into play in the minds of the consumers. Models are exploited to the extent where they become accessible as commodities by the mass public due to the manner they are portrayed in the mainstream media as a symbol of consumerism. The question, if models are, after all, products is controversial in itself which warrants an in depth discussion on the different stances for and against this topic which the following paragraphs set out to attain.
The Free Dictionary defines product as "an item that is made or refined and marketed". This idea is applicable in the case where models are used as a form of marketing tool to sell the products in question. Models are subjected to alterations which aid them appear a certain enticing way to the eye of the consumer that further accelerates the whole marketing process. Consequently, models are made into objects of liberal access, by making themselves desirable and attaining ways to fulfill those expectations.