Sex Sells? No, It Doesn’t

By Carl Engelking | June 23, 2017 1:41 pm

Sex appeals in advertising have a long history, but for good reason? (Credit: Wikimedia Commons)

Chiseled abs and bikinis can sell just about anything, right? According to the minds behind those Carl’s Jr. ads—and countless others—you’d think that’d be true.

This idea that “sex sells” has hung around for more than a century, and by this point it’s almost accepted as a doctrine. And those are exactly the types of claims researchers love putting to the test.

John Wirtz, an advertising professor at the University of Illinois, conducted a meta-analysis of 78 peer-reviewed studies that examined the efficacy of sex appeals in ads. The results: participants weren’t any more likely to remember a brand name or purchase a product, and, in fact, they were more likely to view the brand negatively.

“We found literally zero effect on participants’ intention to buy products in ads with a sexual appeal,” Wirtz said. “This assumption that sex sells – well, no, according to our study, it doesn’t. There’s no indication that there’s a positive effect.”

Wirtz, who recently published his analysis in the International Journal of Advertising, isn’t the first to arrive at this conclusion. In 2015, researchers from Ohio State University performed a similar meta-analysis of 53 studies that asked participants if they would be interested in purchasing a product after viewing a sexual or violent ad. Once again, sex didn’t move the needle (violence didn’t either). The researchers hypothesized that people are so inundated with sex, they’ve simply grown desensitized to it.


(Credit: Via AdWeek)

Linking sex to consumption has a long history in advertising, dating all the way back to 1871 when Pearl Tobacco released an ad that depicted a nude woman floating above stormy seas. Pearl is largely credited with being the first company to take their advertisements in this direction. Or take the language in an Ivory Soap ad from the early 1900s (the poster depicts a gang of sailors bathing together it what looks like a tarp):

We all had a bath…about 25 being under the hose at one time…It certainly seemed like home to rub in the mild Ivory lather from head to foot and then feel the delightful exhilaration following a brisk rub down”.



Pearl shocked the world with this ad in 1871. (Credit: Wikimedia Commons)

Some theories hold that sexual content in ads conjures fantasies in the viewer’s head that they then associate with the product. Or perhaps humans are hard-wired to notice sexual images, so they easily attract our attention—exactly what an advertisement is meant to accomplish. A 2015 study published in Nature found that male nematodes prioritize sex over food, and appeared to have an extra set of brain cells devoted to getting it on. To be clear, these special cells, dubbed “mystery cells of the male,” were only present in worms and not humans. Given this caveat, researchers said their results could “give us perspective” about variations in sex when talking about humans.

Another popular explanation for the appeal of sex in ads is that it activates the “lizard-brain,” or the most primitive parts of the brain that are responsible for our base survival instincts like fear, sex and aggression. The “lizard brain”—we’re using air quotes—idea traces back to the 1960s and Paul MacLean’s “Triune Brain” theory. MacLean oversimplified processes in the brain and many of his assertions crumble under deeper scientific scrutiny. But scientists have found that the amygdala, an almond-sized part of the brain, plays a key role in sexual arousal and is activated when viewing provocative images.

But even if sexual ads activate the brain, the evidence seems to indicate that’s not enough to compel us to reach for our wallets. Indeed, Carl’s Jr. ditched its racy ads this year and shifted their focus back to the old-fashioned approach of making charbroiled meat, cheese and toasty buns sexy on their own, without Paris Hilton and Kate Upton.

CATEGORIZED UNDER: Living World, top posts
MORE ABOUT: psychology
  • Uncle Al

    Carl’s older ad campaign spoke to me – Garden of Eden temptation. Those burgers were face-stuffing, spit-dripping good! We went back once since the new, grotesquely offensive ad campaign. I suspect they redid the burgers, too. feh

    • Zimriel

      ‘don’t bother me, i’m eating’

  • Doomroar

    Is… is this sponsored by Carl’s Jr by any chance?

    Anyway but then if sex, violence don’t sell what does? there’s clearly an obsession with the topics from the consumer side too, romance and action are predominant genres that live thanks to violence, and if not sex, then the concept of cuteness and lovably.

    • Brooks A. Mick

      It’s left-wing anti-male propaganda. Don’t believe it. Sex still sells whenever it’s tried! It’s like free-market capitalism and unlike communism, socialism, or progressivism in that regard. Also unlike Trump approval polls. Don’t buy them either.

  • Twilightstar

    Carl Sr. ad is great. Funny story line puts the food front and center, excellent. Never had one of these burgers. They aren’t available here. They look good though. Here’s another super idea — make the food as tall, embellished and wonderful as it looks in the ad. Gotta keep your mind on the product quality alt all times.

    • BraveNewWhirled

      They are tasty burgers, and the fries are good too. There’s a Carl’s less than a mile from here and I can’t wait for lunch. Thanks for making me hungry.

      • texantim

        A minute on the lips…

        • Bill Jefferson

          …. tastes wonderful.

          • texantim

            “Thats what she said”

    • Slwsnowman40

      In the East, go to Hardee’s. Same company owns both.

    • john pierre smith


      • RLABruce

        Me, too. But I can’t remember the product she was selling.

        • James Barclay

          because you were not paying attention and probably pounding your pecker too hard.

      • golfjbh

        Now this is the most intelligent statement made concerning this story. Good hamburgers and great looking girls is what the story is about not BPH, diarrhea or someone personal experience with sex or hamburgers. For goodness sake I feel like I am at a Democrat rally no one knows why they are there but they were given a nice poster.

        • Deplorable Incisor

          Spot On!

      • Twilightstar

        Getting down to basics and it works ; )

    • britain

      They suck butt.

      • ComeyTheClown

        A type of sex that definitely would NOT sell…

        • britain

          The DNC would gobble it up.

      • James Barclay

        I’m sure you’ve seen this sort of thing done, eh?

    • Jay Russell

      Carls Jr’s are all diarrhea palaces.

      • James Barclay

        I hope the hell you, as a concerned and caring citizen, reported them to the health department. I did it to one burger outfit and my and others complaints closed the whole company down for good.

  • ThothAmon

    Doesn’t sell anymore because it’s everywhere now. Supply and demand

    • BraveNewWhirled

      Exactly! When women are walking around dressed as… girls who walk around… when fanny shots become the common fare… It’s no longer interesting or “compelling”.

      • Brooks A. Mick

          Where’s the toaster ?

          • John (magnum)

            If sex doesn’t sell, why is prostitution called the ‘oldest profession’ ?

          • James Barclay

            Prostitutes serve sick, lonely and otherwise unwanted males who have no ability to be social, make lasting relationships, don’t know the art of sensual lovemaking, but do have some money, but usually not much of it. These guys are truly the sadness of the earth and the whores are there to prey upon them.

          • nik

            Cobblers! Thats just catholic rubbish.
            Old men with loads of lasting relationships, with other old people, male or female, whose partner may have died, may just fancy sex with a young woman, who, if she was not a prostitute would have no interest in having sex with and old man.
            Another scenario, is that a man in a steady, but sexually boring or unsatisfactory relationship, may seek a prostitute to perform sex acts that his partner may not wish to.
            In addition some men may just want an uncomplicated ‘quicky’ while unavoidably separated from their regular partners.
            There are many more possibilities, all it takes is imagination, instead of a closed, prejudiced, blinkered, one track mind.

          • Wulf

            Rubbish? Very possibly.

            But then, so is the self-contradictory assertion that any one elderly man could have, “loads of lasting relationships.” A man could live 110 years, and there simply isn’t the time for “loads of lasting relationships”- just for, “loads of,” short, “relationships.”

            In the second scenario, the hypothetical man is no longer in a relationship, but hasn’t even got the bollucks to inform his former partner that the relationship is ended.

            “In addition, some men may just want an uncomplicated,” forever single, life, without any relationship at all; but, like the hypothetical man described above, they simply haven’t any courage to say so, to the partner whom they never should have been with in the first place.

            It is oft said, and holds true, that:
            A thing is what a thing does.

            Given that reality, unfortunatley none of the aforementioned examples can accurately be called examples of “men” – not even from an entirely objective vantage point, for their behavior is inescapably indicative of the inevitable end of their genetic lineage within no more than a few generations, which is by definition, evidence as unfitness within the species.

            The proof that such ugly, ridiculous, frivolities haven’t the skulls, spines, nor androgenic anatomy, to match even a raccoon, lies in the fact that they are supporters and enablers of human trafficking, in which they play the role of the rapist ‘rental’ clients.

          • nik

            Another load of cobblers, and catholic crap!
            First paragraph;
            ”Old men with loads of lasting relationships, with other old people, MALE OR FEMALE!’
            Have had a lifetime to make them, and they may be relatives or friends of others that they know, and they can be simultaneous, So, they CAN be long term.

            [Only people with their brain in a catholic cage, cannot comprehend more than one long term relationship simultaneously.]

            Second paragraph;
            Again narrow minded catholic crap! Many people have long term ‘open’ relationships, especially as they get older and mature, which you obviously have not.

            Third paragraph;
            Is again nonsensical rubbish, if they are single, then they dont have a partner, so they obviously would have nothing to say to a non-existent partner. So your criticisms are again, garbage.

            Fourth, fifth and sixth, paragraphs;
            Are the biggest load of narrow minded prejudiced garbage, that I’ve seen in print for years.

            If those are your personal views, then you are likely to end your life as a lonely, miserable, bitter old ratbag, because you are well over half way there already, with
            a personality that is, quote; ”ugly, ridiculous, and frivolous without the skull, spine, nor androgenic anatomy, to match even a raccoon,”

            Those who wear tinted, [tainted] glasses see everything in life tinted.

            All in all a very sad specimen of, [I wont say humanity because you obviously have non] a homo-primate.

      • Doszap

        Just join Instagram,it’s a soft porn site.

      • Brinley

        I agree. Using fanny shots of women turns off people.

        • golfjbh

          What? Do you live under a bridge on Main street USA>

          • Deplorable Incisor

            Brinley is either a woman or one of those pathetic metro-men that live in the big cities. Clueless about real men either way.

          • James Barclay

            Mature men who appreciate the female form have their particular preferences of her anatomy and women know their assets (not a pun). Its the nature of the human courtship game. I’m not a man who is especially interested in women with large breasts, but I appreciate them. If the woman is loving, has a great personality and an interest in me they, among other endowments, can turn me on like mad. Get this: I love women as wonderful human creatures and not sides of prime beef. Where in hell is your humanity?

          • Deplorable Incisor

            My humanity is entirely intact and I don’t treat women like sides of beef. We are discussing whether or not sex sells, not a touchy freely safe space subject I’m afraid. It definitely sells to me and I’m not politically correct enough to deny it. Sue me.

          • Wulf

            You discuss women as if they were sides of beef, relating the marketability of women to that of images of meat. The proud assertion that “sex sells” to you, is further clarification of your mindset which objectifies the fairer sex – and substantial reason for women to demand you refrain entirely from any sort of “touchy,” or “feely” behavior anywhere near their own space, which is not yours to invade. The subject has left you stripped of humanity before you even knew what hit you, and you’re not grammatically correct enough to deny it, Sue.

          • Deplorable Incisor

            Spelling nazi and PC metro-dude. Nice combo. 👍

          • Wulf

            Ahaha Nice swing – but you’re so far from the fairway, I’m not entirely certain whether you’re in the rough, or off the course property XD

          • Wulf

            Did you just attempt to use the word, “WOMAN,” to insult “Brinley” with name-calling?

          • Deplorable Incisor

            You would look at it that way. As stated it’s actually a compliment. Wouldn’t expect you to get it though.

          • Wulf

            You wouldn’t expect me- a chick- to “get” that that’s supposed to be a “compliment?”
            I’m calling your bluff: At best, it’s a fumbled neutral comment.

          • Deplorable Incisor

            Ah, not a metro, a woman.
            Not one bit surprised you don’t understand the thinking of real men. There aren’t that many of us left in the western world. Mostly thanks to feminism and the politically correct speech codes employed by people who want to strip the western man of that which makes us men.
            I am sure you believe that to be a good thing…I pray for my daughters that feminism and political correctness die a swift and deserved death one day soon. The damage done to the men (particularly) and women (by default) is already incalculable, not to mention the western world in general.

          • Wulf

            As predictable as ever, word for word. I could’ve written you a script. Your mind is… Not mysterious.
            Exactly how certain are you of every word you state?
            It is psychological difficult for many men to be proven incorrect in their assumptions, repeatedly. I am not criticizing this common male characteristic, I am merely acknowledging its reality. When faced with the scenario of being shown to be incorrect regarding objective, factual details, he (a man, representative of many- though not all- men) has a natural inclination to take such corrections personally – as if being incorrect were a sign of some sort of male shortcoming, or personal fault- despite that objective facts do not judge. Neither does the female sex (speaking VERY generally; exceptions, of course, exist) judge the character of any person, male or female, for mistakenly assertion that which is incorrect.

            But in asserting that which is incorrect – time, and time again – by assuming to be fully informed on ALL that is and ALL who are, are the incorrect assertions made By Mistake? Or, are they asserted in a futile attempt to spare a man his frustration with being shown to be incorrect?

            Are you able to handle being corrected on that which you have incorrectly asserted? Can you control your emotional response to one of dignity, instead of submitting to the path more traveled- that of reactionary, misdirected rage?
            We shall now see, for you have made the dishonorable mistake of attempting to define me – a mistake a man should know better than to commit.

            Why avoid such presumptive mistakes? Why should he stand down with dignity, rather than foolishly fight a battle that does not exist?

            The answer is simple and timeless:
            Hubris. A ruthless, cruelly ironic, equal-opportunity capital crime.


            A woman?
            Nay. A girl.

            The Western Word?
            I am Indigenous. I am Klamath (nation: Klamath-Modoc Tribal Alliance). The Klamath have lived at Giiwas (Crater Lake, Oregon), for over 8,000 years. Klamath tell histories from back when Crater Lake was a mountain. Klamath describe the VEI 7 volcanic event that caused the tallest mountain of the Cascades (12,000 ft alt) suddenly violently imploded, and became the deepest freshwater lake in the world – in a fiery, explosive, dark, thunderous, 18,000 foot descent from sky, to below Earth.
            I am of the Western World.

            I Know what has been done to the Western World. Dry your eyes; you’ve not suffered.

            You’re sure what I “believe” is good, or bad?
            I grant you the mercy of the opportunity to retract that particular assertion.

          • Deplorable Incisor

            All that just to say that you believe I’m wrong? Maybe I had you pegged correctly the first time?

    • kennethhenson

      Too many free sources making selling it a losing effort.

    • Reaganite “The Deplorable”

      Exactly why buy the cow if the milk is free.

      • Sissy

        The last person I heard say that was 83 years old back in 1978. You should be embarrassed.

      • Guido88

        Why buy the whole pig when you can get the sausage for free?

        • Reaganite “The Deplorable”

          Hey I usually am delighted just to rent the occasional new garage for my sausage.

        • Eric Jordan

          Now that is quite funny.

        • James Barclay

          And don’t ever try to teach a pig to sing.

      • James Barclay

        That’s an old Southern saying attributed to Elvis Presley who was asked why he didn’t get married. Give us some provenance, will you please? By the way, Reagan’s genius was that he knew how to delegate authority, knew what he did and didn’t know, knew how to enthrall an audience with his acting skills and knew how stay the hell out of the way and go ride his horsies down at San Clemente- and keep his loyal friends. That, my good buddy, was his genius. And don’t call yourself deplorable. Anyone who loves his country and cares about what happens to it is the very opposite of deplorable. Get it?

    • off the reservation

      Sex?? Really?? Most of the commercials I see have the woman as the smarter one and the male as a boob.

      • caperick

        See? Boobs!

      • dave long island

        Correction: the white male is the boob. The black males are all computer programmers and ‘in the know’ about pretty much everything… lol

        • Mark James

          Yep, every TV add has minorities has the geniuses and professional people while white people (especially white males) are the dumbest things on the Planet. I guess smoking crack and shooting heroin in Hollywood gives you those insightful perspectives.

          • C. Edmund Wright

            Lowes Home Improvement….where apparently only white guys work the delivery truck and the only customers are the African American upper middle class married couples with a home and happy kids.

            You know, just like real life….

          • Deplorable Duke Sweden

            Let’s not forget CPI and the other home security company, where all of the home invaders are white, slobbering idiots and the guy manning the phones is black. One time there was one white guy and one black guy, but the people on the phone saving the day were black.

            What they don’t realize is they’re showing their own subconscious “racism” (not that I give a crap about racism) by always having the owners of the homes be white. Idiots.

          • tom


          • James Barclay

            I’m glad I now know your real name and your really sick agenda.

          • Deplorable Duke Sweden

            Pleased to meet ya, doouchebaag!

          • Vlad TheSkewerer

            Scuse me while I set this pile of 600 million dollars on firrrrrrre….

          • James Barclay

            Have you and Dave Long Island been hanging out together? Well, they do say misery loves company.

        • Vlad TheSkewerer

          Once saw a commercial that took place in a radio station featuring 2 witless white good ol boys doing their car show and a black gentleman impeccably dressed in a 3 piece suit, Rolex and briefcase, obviously the financial show host. Immediately thought “BS, nobody does a radio show in a 3 piece suit!”

        • Silent Wind

          Correction: If there’s a woman in the commercial then all MALES despite race, color, creed etc are depicted as the idiots. While women are hailed as the smart and reasonable know like in real life.

        • tom


        • James Barclay

          Oh, Boo Hoo. No one is gonna wipe your tears away. Go feel sorry for yourself in front of your local bartender. Life is life and we all ought to get used to it.

      • ButterflyEffect

        What? It isn’t a universal sexual plus to have stupid men?!


        Stupid media people don’t get it, do they?

      • StarRiders

        Definitely true. And to try to be objective about it, I fast forwarded through hundreds of hours of television to watch only the commercials. Well over half of them showed the men “inferior” the woman in some sort of way, from minor to major. In not a single instance of over 150 commercials was the woman shown in an inferior light. And yet women still complain about sexist commercials as though they are the ones made to look bad.

    • bobw-66554432

      Spot on. It’s as boring as sand in the Sahara and for the same reason. Too much and no variety to “catch your eye.”

  • JohninRedding

    “The researchers hypothesized that people are so inundated with sex, they’ve simply grown desensitized to it.” When sex ads were just a small portion of the advertising media, it might have worked better because it was still different. It wasn’t common place. But now it is so ordinary that it doesn’t catch your attention. I understand in Europe they show full frontal topless ads on TV. I suppose that is catchy at first but over time it too will be mundane.

    • Brooks A. Mick

      My bet? This is “research” done by the feminazis and other anti-humanity, anti-male counter-cultural activists. Don’t buy it.

  • ProCannonFodder

    Sex is overexposed yes, but please..don’t get it twisted. Sex sells and if it doesn’t for you then you are in the minority. If you feel a biological imperative then sex has no choice but to sell subconciously through attraction.

  • lysosome

    The Carl’s Junior ad works for me. Imagine the same ad with a 350 lbs 50 year old hag with greasy hair and bad adult acne…

  • Slwsnowman40

    Weren’t those Carl’s Jr ads aimed at teenage and 20 something males? Those seemed extremely effective to me, but I was a 20 something male at the time…

    • Deplorable Incisor

      Works on 40 and 50 somethings too.

      • Slwsnowman40

        I think the key to that is “male.”

  • texantim

    Funny, ads dont use women/sex to sell cars anymore. Remember back in the day the sexy woman laying on the hood? The only thing I know of now is the annual mfr car shows, sometimes will use sexy women, but a guy is doing the sales pitch.

  • Anonymous Isn’t Anonymous

    There are two ways to turn me off to a product: shove fatties in my face, or inundate me with turned out western porn plastic skanks covered in tattoos.

    Now, I know what you’re thinking. “He’s a prude!” Nope. I enjoy sex as much as anyone else with a healthy libido…alongside that love thing. Westerners don’t seem to grasp this concept. To them, the concept of intimacy is almost subversive.

    Interestingly enough, Asian countries of all places ‘get it’, and are taking advantage of this emerging market.

    • Bob Jenkins

      Nice generalization about “Westerners”.
      Also, no one wants to hear about your little libido.

      • Anonymous Isn’t Anonymous

        Triggered much?

        I’m sorry, but the 1960’s way of doing things is no longer relevant. Time passes, with or without you.

        • OWilson

          Is there real love in Bangkok? :)

        • Bob Jenkins

          But the “sexual” “revolution” was in the 60’s you little maggot. Try a different decade.

      • Wulf

        Based on that comment, I’m not convinced you’re informed of the meaning of the word, “libido.”

        I am not exactly familiar with the sort of “emerging market” which AnonIsn’tAnon describes as being “taken advantage of” by Asian nations. However, in a very broad sense, correlating to about a dozen industries, it is apparent to me, that the time to feed BOTH Tigers- orange AND green- is now.

        • Bob Jenkins

          Little: (often used to convey an appealing diminutiveness or express an affectionate or condescending attitude).
          Need anything else spelled out for you?

  • Bearbait

    I’ve thought this for a long time, especially with those Carl’s Jr. commercials. I haven’t taken my kids into a Hardee’s/Carl’s Jr. since. Commercials that get my attention are witty, comical, profound or beautiful….Budweiser Clydesdales at Christmas, need I say more? The current Subaru spots “pass them down, but keep the memories”….well done advertising.

  • Pepperspray137

    I suggest the author take a short look at the success of 50 Shades of Grey, and any tween vampire/werewolf story produced. Sex sells, you just need to market it correctly.

    • Anonymous Isn’t Anonymous

      Interesting, as sales for both have tapered off. Even gutter trash networks like TMZ have fallen off the rails.

      The world is changing. Its not the 60’s anymore, I’d suggest moving on.

      • Snowman 54

        Agree. I’m a member of the sixties generation. I really wish many if not most of us would just calm down and stop trying to drive the train. We’re missing the scenery.

    • Chasseur

      yeah.. that last 50 shades movie was a huuuuge success.

      But that misses the point. The things were products unto themselves. He’s talking about using sex to sell something completely different. For example. . i doubt a girl in a bikini doesnt tell me a whole lot about which table saw is the best.

      • Pepperspray137

        You picked the wrong industry as an example I think, because there are still plenty of letchy men building plenty of things. I do get what you’re saying, and I am saying they’re just doing it wrong. Boobies aren’t the special thing they were 30 years ago, so you have to add context in order to make those boobies appealing. Are we seeing them because the person is excitedly doing something else and oops, or are we seeing a topless model selling yet another brand of boogie boards? Sex still sells, but nudity without context is boring.

        • Chasseur

          point taken. I guess some do select a particular LED light fixture or tape measure based on a girl younger than my daughter standing next to touting her particular assets . 😉

    • Snowman 54

      You missed the point. The movies are selling themselves. Puerile pleasure. The point of the story isn’t that sex doesn’t sell itself. Look under any downscale metro streetlight. The point is that it doesn’t sell products that aren’t about sex. Selling swimwear? Sure. It’s part of the package. Selling dish-soap? Does it CLEAN? Performance matters. Quality matters.

      • Pepperspray137

        Context matters, two happy people washing dishes together splashing one another while they do the dishes might just sell.

        • BG60093

          If it has anything to do with washing dishes, it won’t sell me.

          • T-grondo

            How about two happy people loading the dish washer?

          • Deplorable Incisor

            As long as one of them is a voluptuous, scantily clad woman, I’m sold.
            I’ll buy two if they both are. :-)

        • Palace Cobra

          Now THAT is obscenity.

  • Htos1av

    The world’s largest and richest demograph, is too old to care. We were the 60’s/70’s kids. Been there, done that, got the tee shirt, cassette, and cd’s, and mp3’s.

    • Palace Cobra

      8-track tapes, Junior. My car still has an in-dash 8-track player that came as original manufacture from the car assembly line. Still got the tapes too.

      • glamdeluxe

        78’s son

        • Bunky


          • glamdeluxe

            The only way to listen to the Carter’s.

  • Field Dog

    This ad will not motivate me to buy a Carl’s burger. However. I did watch the commercial.

  • David Harrison

    Pornhub is free

  • CanUHearMeNow?

    “We found literally zero effect on participants’

    Wonder what the ages and gender of those participants?
    Next time try males, 15-30 years old.

  • Bill Jefferson

    So pretty girls didn’t increase sales to poopushers?
    Wow – great research.

  • Jule Miller

    Meta-analyses do not involve any original research. Rather, they lump together the research others do and try to derive conclusions from it. The quality of the underlying research, which studies are chosen, etc, are all up for grabs. Finally, this is a type of “research” which is 100% dependent on statistics. It is not like being able to look through a microscope to prove to yourself that bacteria exist. And statistics can be spun any way you want to prove just about anything. Just pick the metrics and parameters to make the data do what you want. Sex catches our attention. What the advertiser does with that attention after determines the rest, but if you don’t get attention, your ad will be worthless.

    • Buddha

      Oops. I didn’t see your comment before posting mine. I completely agree.

      I personally love the “major” research study a number of years ago which announced that men having vasectomies increased their risk of prostate cancer. A year later the study was withdrawn because they learned that the researchers didn’t understand the underlying dataset. That dataset contained men of all ages so the actual result of the study was the profound announcement that if you have a vasectomy you are likely over the age of 40 years old and therefore your risk of prostate cancer was higher then those men in the study who were in their 30’s and didn’t have vasectomies. DUH! So the older you get the higher the risk of prostate cancer.

      • RLABruce

        The risk of dying is greater as you get older, too; everyone will die before they’re 200 years old. Except me, of course . . .

        • James Barclay

          Or—unless you happen to be Yuval Noah Harari, Ray Kurweil or Elon Musk. But by then humans will be all but extinct as we recognize them and we will enter the age of the Borg. Me? I’ve live a full life. I’m kind of tired, though healthy as a horse and when I drop off this coil I’ll probably turn back into totally and irreversibly unconscious star dust.

      • Doszap

        Bingo, at 50, ALL mens’ prostate starts enlarging part of life.
        Older you get,bigger it gets.That’s when the 2-4 trips to the toilet starts after you go to bed.You get to feel like crap next day because you got 4-6hrs sleep 2hrs at a time.
        Some folks can handle it, others feel tired and like they got ZERO sleep the next day.
        Vicious cycle.

        • Erik Bosma

          GODDD!!!!!! That sucks…. I hate it!! Man, I remember sleeping for 10 hours straight and now….

          Actually got 5 hours once last week.

        • Sissy

          fortunately, I’m not married to you.

          • Doszap

            Getting larger doesn’t mean impotent, any more than a woman going through menopause automatically shrivels up and dries out to the point they no longer want intercourse.

    • TomcatJoe

      Absolutely right. Most meta-studies are useless. So this was a meta stud of 78 papers, out of how many? How were these 78 chosen? How were they conducted? Peer reviewed, so what? Studies have shown that even among “peer reviewed” papers, bias, fraud and non-repeatability are rampant. If I can’t see the actual methodology used, I assume it’s essentially an opinion piece.

      • Erik Bosma

        That’s why we got brains, ain’t it?

    • whoodoo

      And, more relevant to the current article, Where’s the Beef? – i. e., where is the study reported here so that competent readers can examine the methodology used, and determine whether the conclusions drawn, flow from the methods, logic, analysis etc? I’ll tell you where it is. It’s behind a paywall “Article Purchase: 24 hours access for USD 42.00″, 30 days access for USD 187.00”.

      This BS has to stop. If so-called “science writers” and media outlets are going to exploit basic research findings (much of which is funded, directly or indirectly, by public funding in both state and private institutions) for their profit, they should be made to make available, to the public readers, free access to the underlying research paper. Not to do so, which has become typical, allows for all manner of distortions in reporting, something that damages the credibility of science research in general, and allows for seemingly never-ending strings of sequentially contradictory results bearing on all forms of human activity, from diet and health, to economics, and even the hard sciences.

      • Trutherator

        The writer makes no pretension to a peertoeviewed scientific rigor, just points to the meta-study and who did it. Advertising researchers can verify or debunk.

        That said with the hints given I’m not convinced. One as researcher did studies with MRI’s and got surprises. Asking somebody if they’re more likely to buy something after seeing an ad is like asking them if they think they are expected to. Coke probably did focus group tests for their New Coke but got hammered on the streets.

        • whoodoo

          As you might expect, I completely disagree with your assertion that the writer “makes no pretension” – the writer writes with an authoritative voice, and 99 out of 100 of their kind do not have the background in general research methodology, and familiarity with the specific controls required for specific areas of research, sufficient to judge the veracity of the research done. Further, your implication that “peer review” constitutes scientific rigor only belies your own ignorance of such things. Peer review, I’m sorry to inform you, is only the beginning of the review process. It only means that an article or study passes the minimum standards for the society or publication in which the article appears (and those standards can be all over the map in terms of rigor). The real review begins when other experts in the specific or related area of research have access to the published article and can bring their critical judgement to bear on it. The latter may take weeks, months or years depending on activity in the field and importance of the findings relevant to existing generally accepted theory, or other related findings. And, science does not operate according to “advertising” standards – i. e., appealing to the mass popular opinion through mass media, and those who use publicly-funded scientific research to promote such for profit, or enhance their probability of grant-getting, do harm and should be, at least, responsible for providing access to their supposed source of authority.

          • James Barclay

            I’m submitting your letter to “The Journal of Unreproducible Results”, an organ dedicated to pseudo-scientific, unreliable and utterly ridiculous claims. Of course, then we can consider submitting it to the journal DENSA.

        • James Barclay

          All right, all you pseudo-scientists. Save the pontificating for your oral challenges.

    • James Barclay

      Anyone who has taken Analytical Analysis and Staistics (not the same things) knows the truth of Benjamin Disraeli’s admontition “There are three kinds of lies: Lies. Damned Lies. And Statistics.” (Did you know that 99% of men on Death Row have eaten tomatoes during their lifetimes?)

  • Sane Responder

    Sex may not sell many products, but it sure makes viewing ads so much more enjoyable. Social Justice Victory!

  • hoepper

    No wonder, when women give it away for free now.

    • mcc99

      “Give it away for free.” Think abt that. Women commodifying their sexuality is a major rsn why things betw the sexes are so strained. By implication you suggest that women whoring themselves out is actually a desirable thing. It isn’t. “Giving it away” is just what women and men are meant by nature to do. By suggesting that whoring themselves out is natural (ie, to be expected) is wrong and casts women as things to be rented out.

  • Uncle Al

    1) Carl’s new advertising is grotesque crap.
    2) Carl’s new burgers are consistent with their new advertising.
    3) Summation: an unsexed “screw it.”

  • mcc99

    Sexy images in ads can’t compete for attention when said competition is hardcore porn available for free on-demand via the Internet. In order to qualify as sexy enough to get my attention, an ad needs to depict a woman on top of another, both naked, with the one on top humping the bejesus out of the other while deep French kissing her. Anything less than that, I won’t even notice.

  • idontknow

    Maybe it doesn’t sell better, but if we are stuck with ads anyway, might as well be something worth looking at…

  • the_strickler

    Do a study of tipping. Low cut tops get more tips as do the pretty young ones.

    • Palace Cobra

      Cow tipping is more fun, and those are serious milk bags!

      • Mac-101

        Oh the inhumanity, what about da Bovine?

      • Inimical Jim

        That’s why we had mad cow. No one was tipping.

    • Kala

      In person great. On TV boring.

  • JustAl

    I’d like to see a study comparing all the hype filled, brain dead ad campaigns to a simple photo of the product along with brief, accurate description and pricing information.

    My bet is there would be zero statistical difference in likelihood to buy the product.

    Heck, I’d like to see political campaigns reduced to these essentials without all the bells and whistles.

  • Topazure

    All I know is, after that disgusting Paris Hilton Big Buford Rally’s ad, I never ate anything Rally’s again.

  • igividen

    Fake news. LOL Looking at the studies that this “meta-analysis” excluded tells you everything you need to know. FRAUDULENT AND LAZY.

  • Neil Denton

    Hardee’s / Carl Jr’s. Have good burgers, it’s good food for a fast food place. But they have terrible service! It’s not just the one closest to my house either. All the one’s in my part of the world have very slow service. They must have a lot of turnover, seems like almost everyone is new. If it weren’t for all the buy one get one free coupons, I would not eat there. If you get food to go you better check your order before you leave. Price and service determine where I shop.

  • heypaisano

    Nothing is left to the imagination. Your a click away from seeing whatever you want to see and it’s doesn’t cost you a dime.

    • Caribou “Dumped” Barbie™

      You are one sick person.
      Seek help.


    WOW! The fashion and cosmetic industries “prove” this professor should stay in the classroom. More liberal academic BS. People like this destroy companies with their “classroom” non-experience.

  • 『Icyman』✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ

    I still don’t like fast food

  • Mike Alan

    Sex might not sell but Carls ad is brilliant and I could watch it over and over again

  • somewherebeyondtime

    It’ll get your attention, still. But we’ve been overloaded with sex advertising for far too long.

  • my2¢

    yeah right….how many people clicked on this BS story because it had sex in the title?

    • BG60093

      How many paid any money to check out this story? I only clicked because it was free.

    • SandyIam

      Negative ghost rider. I clicked on it to read the statistical proof of what I’ve always said, sex does NOT sell a product or service, and if you happen to buy something because you think it does, then caveat emptor. There’s something wrong with the product/service that the seller is hiding behind that titillating ad.

    • james

      Correct, but only Eye Candy, no one is buying product?

    • Sissy

      I clicked on it because it said Sex Doesn’t Sell

      • James Barclay

        I like Hardee’s beef burgers, but not too many. Bad for my old heart.

  • Anonymous Isn’t Anonymous

    Reality: the women who actually eat fast food are pushing 600lbs, complete with diabetes, heart issues, and arthritis from carrying around all that fat.

  • Defiant

    Sex sells unless you’re a whiny “Social Justice” Liberal.

  • 12banjo

    Puppies sell better than sex.

  • Scott Crabtree

    Clearly they’ve never been to Nevada.

    • T-grondo

      Well….sex sells when it’s “up close and personal”!

  • larzo

    It still sells to certain groups — tweens and teens, for instance. How else can one explain the popularity of that terribly-scented Axe spray?

  • Buddha

    I just love studies based on other researcher’s raw data. Without doing a deep dive into the dataset you can draw no accurate conclusions and many of these datasets didn’t retain or ever contain the necessary metadata to fully understand them. This is why we are constantly bombarded with conflicting derivative research studies. It would be nice if researchers would stop using old outdated data sets and do some original studies. That would of course cost money and effort.

    I think I would go with the advertising folks on this one. If they think sex sells then i most likely does.

  • Joe

    Sounds like a disgruntled lezboob did the study.

  • Riollo

    sounds like a useless study since it doesn’t track actual sales, ads don’t influence most people, but all you need is some people to respond to make money

  • Carol Hadenough

    Mom always said, “Don’t buy the cow if you can get the milk for free.”

  • Kayley

    It’s never sold me anything. Sexy woman – what does that have to do with whatever the ad is? Sexy position with man and woman – that belongs in the bedroom, not in an ad. As a matter of fact, for the most part, I get so caught up in my negative attitude to that crap that I don’t even recall what the ad was for most of the time.

  • GeneZ

    People that know good sex do not want sex to sell. Its not a commodity. Sex in advertising does not really sell a product. People who do not know good sex will not understand this.

  • Gideon Fountain

    I think the sexy (also funny) GoDaddy ad campaign was the reason I signed up for their web-hosting service.

  • James Richard

    Where can I buy some of that Pearl soap. I need it!

  • Moral Monster

    So…. What is the writer selling?

  • Palace Cobra

    Is the dude playing Carl Hardee Sr. Brad Pitt?

  • Dennis

    Honestly it won’t get me to buy more of their product, but will definitely be a talking point or create fond memories of advertising that’s hilarious

  • burned_out

    It was always my understanding that men remember the woman in the Ad, but not the product.

    • RPVG

      That’s the whole thing. Sex will attract your eye to the ad, but the content of the AD has to sell the product. Not the sex. If no one remembers the product, that means the ad wasn’t effective even though the sex did ITS part — it got viewers’ attention.

      So the whole premise of this “scholarly study” is an error. Sex never DID sell. It just got the viewers’ attention.

  • whoodoo

    However, go back 25 years, or 50, and they might get quite different results, and it maybe that advertisers are just caught in a rut that was valid “back in the day”, but no longer. That is, instead of propounding all these “just-so” speculative theories about brain function (theories with superficial or “face” validity, but with no solid evidence to back them up), it’s more likely that the average consumer of today has been exposed to, and learned from, a very different set of commercial and popular images, than was the case in the not too distant past. Additionally, brain-function is a function not only of its genetic/immutable determinants but its development – i. e., our learning during development modifies those functions. For those of us who have lived through it, the changes have been obvious with each succeeding decade trying to outdo the last in terms of making explicit in public display sexual/emotional/vulgar content that was forbidden in the previous decade – by more “Puritanical” elements. As also implied in the article, we’re exposed to so much sex and violence by Hollywood and the MSM, we’ve become insensitive to it.

  • Peter Michael

    A study will either prove what you already know from common sense…. or it will be wrong. Exhibit 57.

  • Ads

    BS fake news. Of course sex shapes opinion and drives sales. You are missing something….eyes to look around in the real world.

  • WeAreAConstitutionalRepublic

    I never went to carls jr after watching a hot chick eat a burger, appreciated the effort though!

  • Chad Cooper

    Not sure about anyone else, but as a young man, I like for women to LOOK and BE- like women. Yes, I love to see women looking fresh, every hair in place, smelling fruity and sharp, with vividly colored floral/pastel dresses, rompers and skirts. I love it when women wear the shapely denim onesies or the strappy sandals & heels, or even the 60’s-70’s style daisy dukes with the button crop tops. Yes honey, go spend a sunny day in the park and get a touch of peach or a kiss of copper on your skin! If you’re comfortable with it, go ahead and step around like a model on a catwalk (sensibly that is). Feel free to “communicate” and give us guys a GOOD glance of your REAL pertness, lifeforce and freshness in the blooming spring & steamy summer. My only single line of advice would be that this should done mainly by women that are truly searching for a companion and that are NOT married/engaged. After all, we don’t want more marriages/families to get fractured in a nation that already leads the entire world in divorce rates (and still rising), now do we? I tell you, sex has forgotten it’s roots within life force and passion, two things that make humans- human! Yes, it is true that people can still abound with sex appeal while also maintaining their self respect and dignity. There is nothing wrong with women being women and I HOPE that women still like for men to be exactly the same- but in THEIR respective way: to look, to smell, to walk, and to act like men! Everyone says that sex is everywhere. Yeah I see that too, but most of that is superficial and has no deep, REAL passion and is certainly about “true” love. Lets get one thing straight, there is nothing WRONG with sex… at all! The Real Problem? The problem is that our modern society has had the wrong IDEAS of sex shoved in its face for the last 40-50 years (since the so-called ‘sexual revolution’) that it has overwhelmed, melted and damaged everyones inner circuitry to have a receptiveness for sexual appeal any longer. What needs to change is that people simply have to have more respect for sex as the natural thing that happens between men and women who love each other. Look at all the wild animals of the world. Its so easy for them! Their version of sex appeal is: some courtship dance, a competitive wrestle between males to the ground, or fanning iridescent feathers, or talons being hooked together while falling through the air… All of it leads to making babies so that new generations can continue to multiply, evolve and IMPROVE! Now Remember that first time that “mommy and daddy” told you about the birds and the bees when you were little? or what HUSBANDS and WIVES are doing in the bedroom when they have those ‘special feelings’ for each other? or how we all even got here?!! If you never heard these things explained to you CORRECTLY at youth, then perhaps you may have learned about sex in a negative manner. This is something that allows the twisting, distortion and misuse of sex as an instrument of creation given to us by God. Things have gotten to the point today that sex is often viewed as a nasty thing when it is really not. Entertainment, social engineering, politics and so many other things (EXCEPT God) of all kinds has given society a totally confusing, misleading and degrading view of sex and sex appeal as something that is is not! Don’t blame sex, just blame the entities/groups who pervert and twist it into a “nasty” thing that it shouldn’t really be anyways! Want to know what sex appeal seems like from more wise point of view? Simply open a Bible and read Solomon’s “Song of Songs”. Society may need to go back to the old fashioned, simple life, full of passion, creativity and love of God and a TRUE love between man & woman. People DO want this… many are afraid to admit, while many others never really had a chance to enjoy in THAT way.

  • T-grondo

    I’d hate to be in the advertising bizz in this day and age….does anyone actually watch regular TV anymore?

    I watched the two commercials cause I read the article….but I haven’t watched a real commercial in forever!

    Thought the 2nd add was pretty funny, but the 1st add was just…dumb!

    • Deplorable Incisor

      Yea, that’s why you watched the whole thing too…

      • T-grondo

        Pretty weird when you think about it….I usually don’t watch commercials….but the only reason I watched the commercials…..was because I’d read the article about the commercials…..Holy Crap!!!!!

        Guess I better go to Carl’s Jr. :)

  • Guy Christopher

    I’ll take a Carl’s Jr. Make that two.

  • CarlPheneger

    I still think sex sells, the problem is once the got the viewers attention you have to move it from the beautiful girl to the product.

  • SB

    I smell a whiff of agenda here.

  • SandyIam

    It always had the opposite effect on me; if you have to use sex to sell your product or service, then your product/service is inferior. Superior quality will sell itself.

    Even considering the immorality of it, the connotation that you’re hiding an inferior element of the product is enough to dismiss it outright as an option.

  • Kevin Geary

    Asking people whether it works or not is not the same as measuring whether it works or not.

    • berthamertz

      It is the Hollywood gay, transgender screwed up liberals who run the Ads, what do you expect.

  • berthamertz

    Why are there so many blacks in commercials? Every show, every ad has blacks, or interracial couples with the white girl now. I don’t know what they sell, because I am negro counting.

    • corvinus ✓ᴰᵉᵖˡᵒʳᵃᵇˡᵉ

      They figure that since sex doesn’t sell, that blaxploitation does. But if anything, it’s even more annoying.

  • BlueGreen

    Soooo, time to up the “shock” value, the scandal, attractiveness ,whatever…..looking forward to the free porn. Still won’t buy crap products though, and really who has extra money these days. Good solid laugh though

  • Jljlmjlmn_Prprsprst

    Anti-racists say there is a RACE problem that can only be solved when
    the third world pours into EVERY White country and “assimilates.”

    What if I said there was a RACE problem that could only be solved if
    hundreds of millions of non-Blacks were brought into EVERY Black
    country? How long before people realize I’m not talking about a RACE
    problem, but the conclusion to the BLACK problem?

    They say they are anti-racist. What they are is anti-White.

    Anti-racist is a codeword for anti-White.

  • RLABruce

    Sex used to sell, when men were men and women were glad of it. But nowadays people are too stupid to know if they’re a man or a woman or something else, so they only get confused when they see sex in an ad.

    • corvinus ✓ᴰᵉᵖˡᵒʳᵃᵇˡᵉ

      When dealing with many young men, one Idiocracy quote is woefully underused: “you talk like a f@g”

      • RLABruce

        You can’t say that! That’s hate speech! I’m gonna tell . . . 😉

  • IceStar

    I will buy a product if it is good quality and something I need, other than that, nope.

    I can say, as a woman, I prefer funny adds memorable, not sexy ones.

    Puppymonkeybaby is funny I remember it, an no I don’t drink the drink.

    The add where the father is driving and talking to himself about his putter mom doesn’t know about is funny.

    I like and remember humorous ones.

  • webtvee

    Does this mean we can look forward to the end of those four-hour erection ads every 10 minutes on cable TV?

  • Doszap

    With the advent of the fitness craze and YOGA pants for ANYWHERE, I am surprised the rape rate hasn’t gone up times 10.

    “Some” chicks make me puke, they wear it as a second skin,with a midriff showing, with a models bod,and go into a large gas station, or pharmacy, and act MIFFED because the dudes stare.

    WTH?,GOD made men to BE attracted to the beautiful female form, same of chicks.
    I am not talking Ads’, just everyday life.

  • Doszap


    Read an article on younger folks, not into sex near as much as their parents were in the late 80’s/early 90’s.

  • goldhands

    Nobody cares about “sex appeal” anymore…it’s about dollars and cents when we’re dealing with the cashier. Dollar Tree is becoming the hot (sexy) place to be.

  • Tweety58

    Cu nts are everywhere

  • David Lieder

    Anyone in marketing will know this story is a bunch of BS. Also, the studies are in question because the researchers “asked the participants if they would me more likely to buy” after seeing a sexy ad. Since when do you ask somebody “hey if you saw some sex in ad would you buy the product?” That is the stupidest excuse for research I’ve ever heard.

  • EMSA4

    I’m happily married to a stunner. That’s all I need.

  • Viator16

    Pornography and promiscuity have saturated this society for so long that nothing is erotic or creates “fantasy.” It no longer arouses the imagination. It’s become boring.

  • Layman

    Fear sells.

  • dd121

    All I know is that there is no “Pearl tobacco” today.

  • Stuck_in_Ca√→

    Trust me, sex sells.

  • Justin Denial

    Well, maybe not, but it sure as hell makes a bad ad much better to watch ( the sound muted) . I think the subject group might have composed of those of questionable orientation..

  • Hard Little Machine

    It’s Trump’s fault. Let’s kill all the white people.

    • Botvinnik

      dang right, that’ll fix it. :)

  • Extremist

    Ofcourse sex doesn’t sell. That’s why porn is a 5 billion dollar/year industry. Oh, I guess we can just file this article in the circular bin!

  • Marathon-Youth

    Whatever the reason the opposite is not true Truly ugly unsexy people are not there in the modeling world

  • Chronicler of Riddickulus

    Sex helps the ad agency account exec sell the ad to the brand manager. Selling the product to the consumer? Well, that’s not the same thing, eh?

  • jgelling

    Of course, peoples’ expressed intentions often bear no relationship with their later actions. People love to say “ads don’t work on me” when we know they do on some level.

    And everyone in the ad business knows that one exposure to an ad isn’t going to do it – you need multiple exposures over time to sink in. You can’t just flash a bikini model ad in someones’ face once and instantly change their buying habits.

    And then balanced against this very artificial study we have the real-world reality of billions in ad spending and Hollywood stars and the like which all tell us, yeah, sex sells.

  • gravyrocks

    Hell I’d eat a Carl’s boogie burger!!!! Just one……….

  • Erik Bosma

    Well, if you all want my humble opinion, I think that the beer commercials of the ’80’s (especially) sold a lifestyle with sex as the main ingredient. It sure worked though – especially among men in their 20’s and even into their 30’s.

  • Snugglesgodofdeath

    I think everyone’s just burned out a bit. Maybe it’s time to switch to cute stuff for a while? Maybe happy families?

    • Erik Bosma


  • Come&TakeIt

    Only a sick degenerate would find the Ivory Soap ad to be sexual in nature. That was never the intent of the advertisers. It was from a better, more innocent time. So keep your perverted fantasies to yourself.

    • Erik Bosma

      Woohoo!!! They got to you, didn’t they. Mr. Freud would be proud of you, my friend.

      • Come&TakeIt

        What the hell are you talking about?

  • Jonathon Quentin Public

    “Everything in moderation, nothing in excess.”

  • Claude Jones

    I dunno. I bought plenty of it in my younger days.

  • Russell Steadman

    Sex only gets your attention,, a worthy product will sell itself. Everybody knows that

  • Maindrian Pace

    Like a girl that that would even occupy the same block as a burger like that.

  • Captain Vane

    Fox News rocketed to the top of cable news ratings by putting hot women in high tight skirts with tightly crossed legs on camera 24/7. But, sex doesn’t sell.

    • Brinley

      Fox News is sleazy.

      • Deplorable Incisor

        That’s what we like about it, you dope.

  • ButterflyEffect

    Literally sick of having sex vomited up in every aspect of our lives. Enough already with sex at every turn. Sick of decent plots on media ruined by gratuitous sex. Not interested in other people distorted fantasies of sex. Sexuality is individual, and not happy with vomited other people’s ideals invading and ruining my personal ideals.

    The excessive perversions on human sexuality in politics is really the straw that breaks the camels’ back. Sexuality is NOat universal. Tired of the sick sexual obsessions with orafaces and appendages used for other people’s sexual gratification and all the creepy people attempting to bombard me with their ideals. Sick of it being preached in my kids schools..

    Enough already.

    Does that give anyone the idea that maybe, sex 24 / 7, might trigger negative sentiments?

  • bL1X

    The people have rejected advertisements. Ads are nothing more than an annoyance that can now be bypassed and ignored. That business model has ended. The people seek truth, not propaganda.

  • John Nicholoft

    …the value of skin is inversely proportional to the amount exposed.

  • SouthTexas

    Why buy the cow when you get the milk for free?

  • Thomas R Engel

    Does sex sell? Depends on the beholder. A lot of my interaction with dames is at folk dances; this means I see lots of girls with lots of clothing. Naked or mostly naked women remind me of cows out in a field and thus aren’t very sexy. So one man’s sex in another man’s porn, Now Bloomberg, anything else you want us to click on and find out is a rather banal piece?

  • Brinley

    I won’t buy any product sold by a sexy woman. It tells me “product is bad”.

  • Brinley

    Carl’s Jr is sexist and unpleasant. If I see another woman with lots of hair, I’m going to throw up.

  • Brinley

    The advertisers are selling fantasy, not sex. Usually, it’s the sleazy straight guy fantasy.

  • Deplorable Incisor

    Fast cars and hot women sell everything from apples to zucchini in America. I’m going to Carl’s Jr. for a burger right now in honor of that tradition. This “study” is BS!
    I’ll take a burger that a smoking hot woman is being paid to advertise for over a new age politically correct version of how hamburgers should be advertised every time. Any red-blooded American will tell you the same thing and anyone offended by that can just jump right off the next elevated structure they find themselves standing on. What a bunch of metrosexual garbage. Sexy, skimpily clad babes never EVER get old…EVER!!!
    Combine that with a sexy fast car or motorcycle and you have the American Dream. Anyone who won’t buy that isn’t much of an American.

    • Brinley

      There’s a difference between a woman in a bikini swimming and one who is wearing a bikini posing for a burger company. The first bikini is functional, the second is paid for.

      • Deplorable Incisor

        And I will buy the product from the company that pays the woman to wear a bikini over the company that pays a woman to wear a burka.
        I eat at Carl’s Jr. pretty regular. It isn’t because the burgers are better than other places, it’s because the company has me in mind when they advertise.

        • Brinley

          Why can’t she just wear normal clothes?

          • Deplorable Incisor

            She can. But you aren’t you to sell me anything dressed like that unless it was something I was going to buy anyway.

    • Brinley

      You must be a typical liberal living in a world of make-believe??

      • Deplorable Incisor

        Liberal? HAHAHAHAHA!
        I am your typical red-blooded American male conservative.
        We like smooth whiskey, cold beer, fast cars and faster women.
        The only thing liberal about me is the love I have for my family and friends.
        The rest of me is cold hard steel and I absolutely despise political correctness.

        • Brinley

          You should remain faithful to one woman.

          • Deplorable Incisor

            I am faithful to one woman. Been married 29 years, never been with anyone else.

  • NaMoNai

    whatever …

  • caroleaus

    This applies to cinema as well. The sexiest scene I ever saw was decades ago and I don’t even recall the movie. The lovers never touched but the sensual longing they depicted made it something I’ve never forgotten. Maybe we just don’t have good enough actors to do scenes like that anymore?

  • Jay Russell

    Certainly sex sells! That’s why I bought a 4-door 4-cylinder automatic Honda Accord. What could be sexier?

  • Jarvix

    Thinking back over the years most of the commercials I remember are not the one with sex in them but those that have a catchy phrase of jingle.

  • TheLastSanePersonInAmerica

    If the studies concerned themselves solely with “sex” as exemplified by the examples given in the article, then yeah, sure. Those are so obvious, overt, and single-minded. But beer commercials (or even soda commercials) sell sex more subtly. “Drink this brand and be sexy, seem sexy, and be surrounded by sexy”, and that seems to work. There certainly aren’t a lot of ugly people in ads except as clowns: “Where’s the beef?” for example. Sexy cover art sells magazine like Cosmo, sexy models on billboards sell booze and cars, sexy situations sell reality tv shows… really, who are you kidding with this?

    • Brinley

      Even Cosmo is selling the sleazy straight guy fantasy to women. How sad.

      Cosmo is owned by men, isn’t it?

  • Observer_wi

    Ads that annoy me with obnoxious adverts (herbal essence from years ago), yes, I try not to buy those products.

  • Deplorable Incisor

    I call Bull$hit!

  • Vlad TheSkewerer

    And still we watched the Charlotte McKinney ad.

  • Drock

    I was sold on Obamacare after watching Pajama Boy. JK

    • 4Commencefiring4

      Can’t get any hotter than him.

  • cooldela1966

    It still works for me.

  • 4Commencefiring4

    It may not sell more product, but it might prevent you from muting the commercial and/or heading for the kitchen. And that’s the first step to selling anything–getting the prospect to not look away or get bored with you. Whether he later buys is another question, but for sure he won’t buy if he lost interest during the pitch.

  • Augustine

    Sex probably does still sell.
    Nearly naked women with fake breasts, too much makeup and jaded attitudes? Maybe not so much.

  • Vlad TheSkewerer

    As I told my wife about the Hardees/Carl Jr ads, that’s young guy food, sold to guys looking to shove something in their gut to shut it up so they can get back to class or the jobsite. The commercials have to look like that, they are competing with video games and internet porn for their attention.

    • Brinley

      I won’t buy from sleazeballs.

  • Deporableone2

    I am going to miss the Carls Jr commercials, especially the ones with Upton.

    • Brinley

      She’s a poser.

      • Deporableone2

        Yeah, that’s her job, she gets paid to pose.

  • IOnlyReadHelpfulReplies

    Sexy attracts attention to an ad? Probably. Sexy is responsible for closing the deal? Probably not. Utility/need demonstrated to potential buyer for what is being sold? Now that’s “sexy!”

  • formwiz

    Like the 18-35 age group nonsense.

    Sold to people who never bothered to see if it actually worked.

  • JSain

    Young People are most turned on by their own selfies now….

  • oldvlc

    Hollywood and the music industry have made me numb to it. When every TV show features a dozen perfect bodies and female singers onstage are practically naked while singing stuff that doesn’t resemble music I have to think those industries think product doesn’t matter. Only sexual anatomy matters. Boring. Hey Hollywood if we want pornography we know where to get it.

  • Deplorable Duke Sweden


  • They Did What

    That’s because all the men in commercials look like some homeless bum that sleeps under a bridge. Unshaven, scruffy five day beard in a $1000 business suit. The woman are hot but when you imagine them being attracted to a smelly dirty bum I can’t help but think she probably has skid marks in her skivvies too.

  • Alioth

    My dad got SO offended by the sexy Hardees commercials when they came out. I thought they were hilarious.

  • Bill Smith

    Sex doesn’t sell anymore? When it comes to YouTube videos… yes it DOES!

  • obamasux

    Sex in advertising is actually a distraction which overpowers the attempted message about the product. Would you buy a car from a salesman who dressed normally while he pitched the vehicle, or would you buy from a salesman giving the same pitch, but dressed with a bow-tie with flashing LEDs? Or a saleswoman wearing only a thong bikini?

  • have the faith

    Sex doesn’t sell because it is everywhere, even when we take the kids to watch a nice show on TV or want to watch the ball game the people running the program on tv think that they are pushing the envelope by showing a little bit of hardcore porn. We can watch porn anytime on the internet, there are directors that do that you know. If I want to watch porn, I’ll watch porn. When I’m at my wedding, out to see a ball game, watching a parade, or TV I don’t want to watch porn. Especially if I have my kids watching with me. These porn director wannabes on the major TV news networks and in public, need to stop trying out for their dream job when I’m not in the mood to watch porn. The porn channel is where that stuff belongs.

  • have the faith

    Sex doesn’t sell because it is everywhere, even when we take the kids to watch a nice show on TV or want to watch the ball game the people running the program on tv think that they are pushing the envelope by showing a little bit of hardcore porn. We can watch porn anytime on the internet, there are directors that do that you know. If I want to watch porn, I’ll watch porn. When I’m at my wedding, out to see a ball game, watching a parade, or TV I don’t want to watch porn. Especially if I have my kids watching with me. These porn director wannabes on the major TV news networks and in public, need to stop trying out for their dream job when I’m not in the mood to watch porn. The porn channel is where that stuff belongs.

  • Steve Cadick

    It sells. Want sales to go up? Put porn stars in advertisements.Anyway, the survey is wrong. Hot women (or for those different people-hot men) works like a charm. Especially Asian women and blondes.Why do thing the foreign airlines have such hot women stewardesses? we get sea hags in America

  • PenQ

    Just to be clear, Carl’s didn’t stop with the racy ads because they didn’t work for them, they stopped to avoid feminist pressure on the company in today’s hyper sensitive culture.

  • John

    The “sex” in advertising is politically correct “sex”. It may indeed be “sexy” in a contemporary sense, but men want sex, not sexy. Women, I can’t speak for you. Men are, and always have been, penises dragging bodies around. I know I’m being binary, please excuse the lack of fluidity. I view too much of the things intended to be sexy as kind of stuck up and bitchy. I suppose a lot of it does have to do with fewer and fewer things being seen as taboo. Sex with Charlotte what’s her name in the commercial is too normal…too “what’s supposed to be hot”.

    If they’d only throw in a warning at the end regarding what to do for an erection lasting for longer then four hours it would sell.

  • suleman

    well it depends product to product and company to company. studies finding showing just general results. in this advance time most of he companies use aggressive market approach to gain more market share in short time and using attractive and sexy models is essential part

  • James Barclay

    When I get up in the morning to have my mandatory coffee and eat my breakfast the last thing I want to see is anyone’s genitalia, woman or man. I don’t want a hairy bush staring me in the face when I eat supper at a restaurant and I know damned well I’m not on her ‘apre shift take home menu’. At the bar I want my St. Pauli girl extra cold, good conversation and not silicone pumped boobs hanging down in my face. I’ve seen naked whores roaming the bazaars and alleys and they look filthy- and some stink to high heaven. Its disgusting. If I want sex I’ll arrange for it with my partner and make sure she’s fully satisfied before I finish myself off in her. Maybe some of you should grow a bigger brain and get some maturity. You look and sound like immature little misogynists whose favorite past times are jerking off to pictures of Japanese cafe motorcycles and having wet dreams about your next gaming computer. Take a bath, wash your hair, change into some clean underwear and quit taking rave drugs at the ‘no talent’ lizard lounges. Get a life.

  • nik

    The one way it might help sales is by fixing the image in the observers memory, so that its the first to be remembered if they desire that product.

  • Gail Biggert

    It may not sell…but it damn sure gets your attention !!!

  • 31007 – TANSTAAFL

    “We found literally zero effect on participants’ intention to buy products in ads with a sexual appeal,”

    This is why the studies are unreliable. They are based on what people say they will do as opposed to what they actually do


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