In a world of aspirational fashion modeling, it is exciting to see several companies embrace the use of actual customers as “models.”

lululemon real models

These brand ambassadors look like you and me and while the sleek images appeal to a sense of aesthetic desire, these women appeal to reality.

In a recent WSJ article, brands across the board from athletic clothing maker Lululemon to handbag and shoe designer Coach are inviting customers to upload pictures of themselves modeling the apparel.  Customers upload and tag via instagram or twitter using tags like #TheSweatLife or #CoachFromAbove. even features customer cellphone snaps in a gallery.

coach from above

And this seems to be a win-win for the brand as well.

“People who click on real-people photos are two times more likely to convert to a sale,” said Jose de Cabo, the co-founder of Olapic (an application to help retailers find “customer-models”).


So what do you think: would you be more likely to buy a product from a “real” model?