Real Talk With Sarah Herron

Sarah Herron founded SheLift, a non-profit that empowers girls with physical differences to discover confidence through outdoor adventures and body-positive mentorship. Read on to learn more about Sarah and SheLift’s story and what makes her #AerieREAL!

Real Talk With Sarah Herron

What inspired you to start SheLift?

Growing up as an early 2000’s teen, we only had TV and magazines to idolize our favorite entertainers and role models. There was no Instragram, or platforms for connection that removed the barrier of real human condition. Magazine photos were always photoshopped and the models we saw rise to the top were always impossibly skinny and perfect. I never saw a single women in the media who resembled me or my body. I had one arm, I was chubby and as far as I knew I was completely alone. I compared myself to those I saw and developed disordered eating and depression. I was in my twenties before I ever saw a woman with a limb difference in a movie and it was Bethany Hamilton in Soul Surfer. A few years later I set out to find love on ABC’s The Bachelor and quickly discovered that for millions of women across the world, I, too was the first woman they’d seen on TV that they could relate to. I wasn’t sure how to react or mobilize the groundswell of women coping with physical differences in a world that judges them by appearance. So I continued to do my thing – I got active, I got healthy and I shared my successes and my feelings to Instagram. When I discovered that my accomplishments in outdoor recreation and community directly correlated to my improved confidence and mental health, I realized this was my angle to make impact. I started SheLift with a mission to normalize differences by empowering girls with physical differences to improve self-acceptance and confidence through outdoor adventures and body-positive mentorship. SheLift provides once-in-a-lifetime experiences to young women with differences to help them live authentic lives and connect with others.

We just returned from a fundraising retreat in Mexico last month where 20 women – of different age and ability – came together to connect, share and conquer their obstacles. Over the weekend we went on adventures and practiced self-care and discussed the things that make us different but beautiful. You can read more about the trip and ways to join a future retreat here.

Real Talk With Sarah Herron

What advice do you have for someone looking to overcome a challenge in their life?

The best advice I can offer someone trying to overcome a challenge is to seek connection. When we keep our story and our struggle bottled up, we cannot rise from it.  When you share your struggles out loud (with a trusting support group), you’ll be surprised how many other women come forward saying “oh yeah, I feel that way, too!” There’s empowerment in simply knowing you’re not alone.

SheLift provides mentors for girls involved. Who is your role model and why?

My role model is my friend Debbie. I initially met Debbie through her husband Joe, who I worked with. Debbie is a personal trainer and was looking for new clients and Joe knew I’d be up for the challenge. Immediately I loved working out with Debbie because she didn’t approach training like a drill sergeant or with a bootcamp intensity. Instead, she coached that the importance of fitness and training is to become stronger and healthier and that that doesn’t mean exerting energy to the point of exhaustion. More simply put, Debbie didn’t make me fear fitness. As I continued to train, Debbie and I formed a strong friendship – she was coaching my body and my mind. Every week we would discuss the importance of positive self-talk and overcoming self-limiting beliefs. Despite my best effort to dismiss Debbie’s compliments when I was feeling “fat” or “ugly,” she always reminded me that it’s important I practice good mental health as well as physical health. Debbie is only a few years older than me, but she is a mom and an entrepreneur on a mission. She is empowering postpartum mom-bods to love the skin they’re in. She’s turned her passion of instilling “beauty is strength” into an online training program for moms called “Tough Mamas.”

Real Talk With Sarah HerronWhat makes you an Role Model?

I’ve never liked calling myself a role model because the truth is, I’m still human and I am very much imperfect. I never set out with a mission to lead or set an example, I just started living my life as an authentic person and that seemed to catch on! It’s part of my emotional makeup to want to help girls be the best version of themselves and to discover their self worth and strengths. Despite how many inspirational quotes I read or preach, I believe women are wired for personal struggle. So when people ask me what makes me a role model, I guess I’d say it’s because I’m the non-role model, role model. I’m just a person trying to get through each day like the next. I have strong days and healthy days but I also have bad days and fat days – and that’s OK. At the end of the day, I hope that by sharing my story, other women will realize they’re not alone in their journey.

How does the #AerieREAL message align with SheLift’s beliefs?

SheLift is about empowering women to live their most authentic lives. This means encouraging girls to embrace their imperfections and the qualities that make them unique and lovable and to let go of self-comparison. Through social media, I am trying to pull back the curtain on what differences look like. If there’s more visibility to size, shape, disability, etc, we begin to normalize differences and reject beliefs that only skinny is pretty. The #AerieREAL campaign is leading the same mission. It’s so important to be showing impressionable young women that bodies aren’t perfect! Putting photos of un-photoshopped women in media will help other women realise “Oh, her stomach looks like mine!” or “omg, she has stretch marks, too!” and ultimately help reduce eating disorders and depression. We’re both on a mission saying “It’s OK to have imperfections and you’re certainly not alone.”

Real Talk With Sarah Herron

What makes you #AerieREAL? Comment below & tell us! For more Real Talks, see here!


DIY Key Lime Yogurt Popsicles

All the best key lime pie flavors—even the buttery graham cracker crust—in cool, creamy popsicle form? Yes please! Made with Greek yogurt and sweetened with honey, these popsicles are also a secretly healthy treat. DIY Key Lime Yogurt Popsicles

DIY Key Lime Yogurt Popsicles


  • 4 graham crackers
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1 1/2 cups plain Greek yogurt
  • 4 tablespoons honey
  • 3 limes, juiced
  • 2 limes, zested

DIY Key Lime Yogurt PopsiclesWHAT TO DO:

  1. Crush graham crackers in a ziplock bag or food processor until fine. In a small bowl, combine with melted butter.
  2. In a medium bowl, combine the yogurt, honey, lime juice and zest. Whisk until smooth.
  3. Pour mixture evenly into popsicle molds, with 3/4 inch room left at the top.
  4. Lightly sprinkle graham crackers onto each popsicles, patting down to ensure they stick.
  5. Insert popsicle sticks and freeze until solid, around 4 hours.
  6. Enjoy!

DIY Key Lime Yogurt Popsicles

 What’s your fave cool down snack on spring break? Comment below & tell us!

It’s International Women’s Day!

Aerie women change the world. In honor of International Women’s Day, we’re honoring game-changing #AerieREAL women across the globe. Today, we’re also launching styles designed in collaboration with our #AerieREAL Role Models and supporting causes close to their hearts. 100% of sales of limited-edition styles designed with Yara, Aly, Rachel and Iskra will be donated to movements that matter:

It's International Women's Day!

100% of sales will be donated to Innocence Project, a special cause that works to free the staggering numbers of innocent people who remain incarcerated.

It's International Women's Day!

100% of sales will be donated to Darkness to Light, a non-profit committed to empowering adults to prevent child sexual abuse.


It's International Women's Day!

100% of sales will be donated to I AM THAT GIRL, a non-profit that provides leadership, social & personal development programs for high school & college girls.


It's International Women's Day!

100% of sales will be donated to NEDA, a non-profit that supports those affected by eating disorders.

It's International Women's Day!

Show your support this International Women’s Day and wear what matters to you! Share your photos with #AerieREAL and help raise awareness for these amazing causes.



Introducing… An All-New Aerie Store Design!



Get in here, beautiful! Our brand new store design brings the feel of an indoor market to your mall. With personalization on our extra-special printers and more DIY fun, our new stores are Aerie like you’ve never seen it before. Crabtree Valley Mall in Raleigh, NC is home to the first all-new Aerie, and there are more new designs coming soon! We talked to the brains behind our amazing new store design—Senior Director of Aerie Visual Lauren Cabral and Senior Director of New Store Design and Fixtures Michael Smith—to get the story behind our new design and her ideas for future Aerie homes. Read on for more!

Introducing... An All-New Aerie Store Design!

Yes, our new stores come with an Insta-ready wall!

Introducing... An All-New Aerie Store Design!

Introducing... An All-New Aerie Store Design!

How would you describe Aerie’s new market store design? 

LC: Our overall concept is based off of an indoor market…it’s BRIGHT, comfortable, open and welcoming.

MS: All stores are designed to showcase product and should at the very least provide a pleasant and convenient  shopping experience. However, in my opinion, the best stores designs are an embodiment of the brand, reflecting the aesthetic and attitude of the product while engaging the customer at an emotional level. We want our Aerie girl to feel at home in the store. It should be her oasis at the mall – a place to hangout, relax and shop with friends. After all, the space was designed for her.

Introducing... An All-New Aerie Store Design!

Introducing... An All-New Aerie Store Design!

What is your favorite part about our new stores? 

LC: I need to pick the top 3— it’s too hard to pick just one.

  1. The storefront! Our experience bar in the window brings a fresh & fun approach to the leaseline that we hope our customers will LOVE!
  2. The fitting rooms! They are designed to feel like a really cool mid-century modern apartment. It’s very cozy in there. ☺
  3. DIY and personalization!  We’re excited to bring seasonal concepts to life in a new way through custom printing on the Anajet printer and our DIY market table.

MS: If I have to pick one, I think it’s the fitting room area. I hope that we have provided a place that, while still integrated into the sales area, feels like a sanctuary. We combined the architecture with visuals to create a more relaxed space where our customer can interact with her friends and the sales associates. It’s a space where she is encouraged to try new things.

Introducing... An All-New Aerie Store Design!

Introducing... An All-New Aerie Store Design!

What do you hope to bring to Aerie stores in the future?

LC: Creating new, exciting DIY opportunities and events are at the top of the list! Oh, and can’t WAIT to ADD more Aerie stores!!

MS: I’ll wait for our Aerie Girl to tell me. The nicest thing I heard about the new design was from a sales associate in our Crabtree store. She overheard a customer say that she wanted her first place to look just like the store.Introducing... An All-New Aerie Store Design!

Introducing... An All-New Aerie Store Design!

What advice would you give to someone who is interested in visual design?

LC: Good design is all about problem solving; it needs to be beautiful and functional.  Attention to detail is super important too—working through a project to understanding symmetry, color and contrast are all key—but must be carefully curated to avoid clutter and overload.  Lastly, be prepared to be wrong; you never know till you try!

MS: Inspiration is everywhere; never stop looking, never stop learning, and don’t be afraid to ask questions. If you see something you like, make a note or take a picture. You don’t know where the next great idea is going to come from – and you never know when something that you saw 10 years ago is going to inspire the perfect fixture.

Also, it’s not just about going to a good design school. Sometimes it’s about real work experience and learning from the people you meet along the way. I spent 5 years in design school but never felt like a real designer until my first season as a Christmas extra in a large department store. I was surrounded by incredibly talented people who had limited budgets and a deadline. Best experience ever….

Introducing... An All-New Aerie Store Design!

Real Talk With Erin Drischler Of The Garment Project

Erin Drischler founded The Garment Project, a non-profit that aims to empower women recovering from eating disorders by providing them with new, size-less clothing, individualized for their healthy bodies and lifestyles. We got to know Erin and the story behind her incredible non-profit—read on for more.

Real Talk With Erin Drischler Of The Garment Project


What inspired you to start The Garment Project?

I wanted to start telling a different story. There were so many years where I felt stuck in a loop as the ‘sick girl’. I decided that I want to be a voice for those who feel that same hopelessness. For me, clothing and sizing was a huge part of my eating disorder recovery. Returning home from treatment to a closet full of clothes that didn’t fit my body or soul is a struggle that not many in recovery think of prior to it staring them in the face for the first time. Between my fiancé, Jordan, and myself, our careers, hobbies, and talents seemed to give us the expertise needed to try to make a difference.

We recognized that there needed to be a way for someone to maintain their focus on recovery and not their size, even when finding new clothes. We decided that partnering directly with treatment facilities would give us the information we needed about each candidate Garment works with in a private and healthy way. From there, we needed to give each individual a unique shopping experience. Garment created an online tool that allows us to make a new, personalized shopping page for each candidate containing only items in our inventory that we believe matches both their needs and lifestyle. With the help of hard-working and talented people, we believe Garment will change the recovery process and a lot of lives along the way.

Can you tell us a bit more about the power sizing in clothing can have over women and what they can do to overcome it?

Each time I went through treatment, I would learn new skills or bits of information that would improve some of my behaviors and way of thinking. I would usually leave with a feeling of confidence and that I had worked hard to make important changes in my lifestyle. Yet I would find myself in the same place: back at home, day one of no longer having the security of an inpatient treatment team, trying to get ready for class. I was alone in my room staring at a closet full of clothes that no longer fit my body or recovered lifestyle. It was a terrible feeling.

For a long time I used clothes to fuel my eating disorder. It isn’t uncommon to use clothing sizes as benchmarks. I kept and used my old clothes as a means of body checking, or seeing if weight had been gained or not. After several cycles through the treatment loop, I had been convinced to throw away my scale. My eating disorder didn’t need a scale anymore because I had my ‘sick clothes’. I remember one dress in particular that would reveal my current weight based on how it fit. I didn’t have the financial stability or even the courage to box everything up and start over.

Clothing and fashion are personal and powerful ways to express yourself. It is exciting and the easiest way to express your individuality. I was missing the thing I used to love about getting dressed each day. I wanted to be able to pick my outfit based on my mood or whatever side of my personality was stronger that morning, but I was stuck with a wardrobe that had so many negative associations attached to it that I couldn’t feel confident about anything that I had to choose from.

What’s next for The Garment Project?

We are focused on bettering our service and expanding our reach. This year, we are going to be working hard to spread our message and let people know that we’re a resource for people who have done amazing work for themselves and are learning how to lead a healthier life. Of course, Garment is always learning and growing too. It’s a priority for us to be able to expand our service to men and hopefully we’ll make significant progress on that this year as well.

What makes you #AerieREAL?

It took a few years of practice and slips, but I have a completely new relationship with food, my body, and myself. My eating disordered thoughts once consumed my life, paralyzing me from living a life I was proud of. I am three years into recovery and I still feel pride and excitement when I catch myself in control. I eat when I’m hungry and until I am full, and I always order exactly what I want. When I look at a photo of myself, I no longer examine every dimple or imperfection. I am able to see the happiness on my face because that’s what is most important to me now. I learned how to be more patient with people I care about, and forgive others when they might not have met my expectations. The food finally came second to the relationships, which was one of the most important steps in accepting my recovery.

Living this recovered life had not only led me to accept my body and soul, but truly love and embrace what I have to offer. I’m proud of my recovery and the messy, motivating experiences I went through. It is important to us that we be champions of recovery and show those that are struggling how beautiful recovered life can be.


Want to learn more about The Garment Project? Check out their website here.



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Spring Break Playlist

The Aerie spring break playlist is ready? Ok, NOW you’re ready for your vacays! We’re kicking it off with #AerieREAL Role Model Rachel Platten’s “Whole Heart,” and the sunshine continues from there. Listen to our spring faves below.

Spring Break Playlist

Follow us on Spotify for more of our faves & comment below & tell us the spring jams you’re playing on repeat!