May 13th, 2017 – Dove recently tried to sell women on the idea that beauty comes in all shapes and sizes, but they did that by making their body wash bottles in varying shapes and sizes. So, whether you’re pear-shaped or tall and slender, you can hand the cashier a bottle that matches your physique.
Over the past decade, the company has attempted to cement their marketing as a vehicle to enhance women’s empowerment and go against the grain of traditional beauty branding. Their mission to re-define stereotypical standards and encourage young girls’ confidence has been successful in the past with the “Real Beauty” ad campaigns. This new bottle campaign, a limited edition effort in the U.K., bubbled over pretty quickly after the company released a statement saying:
“From curvaceous to slender, tall to petite, and whatever your skin colour, shoe size or hair type, beauty comes in a million different shapes and sizes. Our six exclusive bottle designs represent this diversity: just like women, we wanted to show that our iconic bottle can come in all shapes and sizes, too.”
The backlash was swift with many calling out the hypocrisy in celebrating body positivity and inclusivity by separating women into their respective body types. “Are you supposed to buy the one that looks like you? Are you allowed to buy the ones that don’t look like you,” Jess Zimmerman asks for The Washington Post. “Are we gearing up for a ‘Divergent’–style dystopia in which society is divided according to soap format? But the most important question is: What, exactly, is the point supposed to be?”
Dove’s PR team has attempted to explain the point as a response to research that finds that one in two women feel that social media has made them feel pressured to look a certain way. “Thankfully, many women are fighting with us to spread beauty confidence,” their statement read.
Twitter, however, spread a lot of disagreement. And, of course, a lot of jokes.
@FastCompany@Dove So if CVS is out of “skinny bitch” bottles am I not going to be able to get clean? Not sure how this works.
Dove’s bottle campaign is only set for a limited release, so as of right now you can choose from one of six different bottle shapes. But as one commenter advised “Life Pro Tip guys: Don’t buy a bottle for your gf/wife and tell her you think it matches her shape.”
Do you think Dove’s new campaign truly tries to celebrate all different shapes and sizes or is it a failed marketing ploy that only puts women in competing categories? Funny or Offensive? Vote and comment below.