A friend of mine showed me some extremely famous advertisements (in form of social experiments) by Dove – the beauty products and body care brand. They were all about making women feel beautiful and accepting themselves as they are, helping them understand that they’re all perfect just the way they are. They aimed at helping women increase their self-worth and fix the skewed way in which we look at ourselves. Seeing that, I smiled and thought, wow, what an adorable, cute and caring little bunch of hypocritical jerks.
I can almost hear the gasps by everyone. Trust me, I have a good reason to say what I am. But first, let me give an example of another brand- Axe. Axe is a deodorant that probably every single male on the face of Earth has tried at least once in his lifetime, owing solely to its advertisements. And I think we can all agree that Axe advertisements are as sexist and offensive as advertisements can get. They all objectify women as sexual objects, all of them inevitable thin and tall, according to the societal standards of ‘sexy’. And with one spray of Axe, all these women pursue the man. Not only does it derogate women, it also portray men as some stupid, sex-hungry animals. I simply do not see how either is fine.
But why am I even talking about Axe along side Dove, right? Because Dove, the oh-so-good brand is owned by the same company that owns Axe, which basically symbolises everything wrong about our perception of the sexes. Unilever, the multinational, multibillion dollar company owns both these seemingly polar opposite brands.
Big multinationals create a particular brand and separate it completely from the others and make sure that they preach whatever they need to so that they sell the product. They’ll turn into the biggest supporters of human rights with one brand, while the other brand has Boko Haram as their brand ambassador. And they will do it without an ounce of shame or guilt if that’s what it takes to increase their turnover. It’s all a question of money and profit and growth in the stock market. Unilever, or any other company, doesn’t give a glowworm’s bum about you.
Dove and Axe aren’t the only example in this world, and I’m sure you’ll find many examples with a little research. On a side note, if you do know or find any, let me know in the comments. Back on the topic, yes.
But I feel a need to say something, that I often do, and it never seems enough. Mostly, this is me reminding myself, than you guys. Look at yourself in the mirror and see a flawless queen, and know that you can slay the world. You don’t need the brand of your soap and shampoo to tell you that, you are enough for the same. You, and only you, will ever care about your self-esteem and confidence, and you are the only one who can make the difference.
Hell, these advertisements are touching, I’ll give them that. Also, I am so sorry to burst your bubble. But this is the sad reality of the world we live in, and we need to be aware and accepting of this. The way I see it, this phenomenon of brands is not going anywhere. So it is upon us to understand that marketing is done with only one purpose in mind – to sell.