[Ed. – You can watch the Dove Campaign For Real Beauty sketching advert here.]
It’s your friends, Dove! Remember us? We reminded you a while back that you can be beautiful EVEN IF you’re above a size 10 by getting a bunch of Real Women™ to pose in their underwear? Don’t listen to those other bad, mean ads, listen to our nice ones! We want to talk to you, Real Woman™ to Real Woman™. And we want to tell you that girl, you so pretty! Anyone can be beautiful, even regular old you! The main thing is, don’t forget that beautiful is what it’s important to be.
The message we’re getting at is not that there are a million, equally valid ways to look and be in the world, or even that you gotta use something to wash and it might as well be Dove. The important message is DON’T PANIC, you are beautiful! You still have value as a woman because of your natural beauty that is OF COURSE there, even if you don’t perceive it. Even if you would describe yourself as “fat,” having “dark circles” or, god forbid, “a mole,” actually no one sees that when they look at you, you carefully curated selection of white women under 45!
Did you see how much more beautiful the outsider-described drawings were than the sketch representing the women’s self-image? With just one gauzy curtain and weirdly airy warehouse (plus FBI artist, fancy) we have shown you what years and years of advertising has done to female self-perception: fucked it right up, basically. And wrongly so. “You are more beautiful than you think [use Dove products],” is our slogan. But underneath that, please recall the deeper truth we have presented to y’all, in the words of one of our own test subjects:
“I should be more grateful of my natural beauty. It impacts the choices and the friends we make, the jobs we go out for, they way we treat our children, it impacts everything. It couldn’t be more critical to your happiness.”
You see, this story of low-self esteem has a happy ending: she was pretty the whole time! She just didn’t know! Only SHE sees those dark circles, yaaaay! If you happen to actually have dark circles, or a “fat face,” or a small nose or any of the other little quibbles the women in the video had with their appearance, bully for you. Either hope your self-perception is impossibly warped and that’s not the case, or go about your life knowing for sure that you aren’t beautiful. In which case you’re probably also a big meanie with a bad job and lame friends.
Let’s be honest, we might be trying to repackage how beauty products are sold, but at the end of the day we’re still selling beauty products, so the importance of your looks is going to remain pretty paramount. If anything, we’re just casting a wider net on who gets to be beautiful because it means more people who now get to buy Dove! Happiness isn’t beautiful—beauty is happiness. It’s been that way for you ‘gine-havers for a long time, and we’re not about to change it no matter how many goodwill campaigns we put out, soz! Please buy some conditioners, your beautiful hair is looking less shiny than normal and that will probably impact the way you treat your children when you get home from work.
Yours somewhat sincerely,
PS. If you could keep it between us that our parent company is also responsible for this sort of thing, we’d really appreciate it. Luv urself!