Diet Pepsi announced Tuesday that it’s launching a new can, just in time for Fashion Week (although you won’t be able to bursar one at Durfee’s until March). And in keeping with that week’s emphasis on the somewhat emaciated, the can’s redesign is emphasizing the skinny: the dimensions have changed from your typical old soda can to one that’s been lengthened to 6″ accompanied by a corresponding reduction in its, well, girth.
It’s a cool look, I have to say, and it seems like a legit marketing idea — it’s “diet” soda, after all. It makes sense that a customer would pick up a can that emphasizes the whole reason they’re drinking the soda in the first place. But it’s the way Diet Pepsi is describing the redesign that I find less cool than the can itself: the “taller, sassier new Skinny Can,” says Pepsi’s press release, represents a “celebration of beautiful, confident women.”
Which I read as: tall and skinny equals beautiful and confident. Because of course, if you look like that dumpy, fat old can, you’re hardly living up to Diet Pepsi’s standards of female beauty. And before I get jumped on with the argument that skinnier is healthier and this is all about emphasizing good lifestyle choices or whatever, let’s remember that Diet Pepsi is hardly the healthiest drink option out there. In fact, some studies show that people who drink diet soda are actually more likely to be obese.
Which is all to say: this can looks really cool, but I find the whole fetishization of “Skinny” a little unappetizing. Plus, I know it’s an optical illusion, but that can definitely looks like it holds less soda — and who wants that?