Look at the difference! They look like sketches of completely different people - there are differences in hair, face shape, wrinkles, and features. Sometimes the insecurities we see in ourselves are not seen by others while the beautiful features we have that others acknowledge are completely disregarded when we look in the mirror. I'm not saying that one sketch is 'uglier' than the other, not at all... but sketches of the same face surely shouldn't have this much difference between them!
I'm not naive to the fact that, ultimately, this is a marketing campaign designed to make a profit. Compared to other campaigns, however, Dove are challenging negative perceptions about body image, insecurities and self-confidence at the same time (multi-tasking - nice one!) So you can argue that Dove are manipulating women's insecurities to sell soap and deodorant, or that the ad is anti-feminist, but I believe that the ad is real and truthful, and that is something that we can't escape from. In an ideal world, it wouldn't matter what we looked like or how we thought other people saw us. However we don't live in an ideal world and it does matter, whether we like to admit so or not. I think it serves as a simple reminder that if you have ever felt disheartened, upset or uncomfortable about the way you look, this is most probably the result of unnecessary focus on that awkwardly placed mole, or your misshapen ears, or your nose you feel is too big for your face... It is true, women are not to blame for how we perceive ourselves but tackling this issue is the first step, for any woman, to realise this. Because if we don't care, then the perfect images that we see on a daily basis in the media and are told to live up to become meaningless and pointless. If we don't care then we see a difference between buying a beauty product because we think we have to (in order to change how we look to appear 'more attractive') and buying a beauty product simply because we want to (in order to enhance our natural beauty).
What is also important to realise is that this campaign by Dove stands out against all other campaigns by similar companies. Dove are tackling real issues and are using real women at the same time. Their campaigns don't focus on unrealistic aspects or use perfect models to advertise their brand and they don't tell women to look a certain way through hidden messages or claim that their product will make them look 'better' (whatever that is). Campaigns like this are shaping the way companies advertise their products as they are realising that in order to sell to people, you have to be able to connect on a deeper level (something that most companies are yet to understand).
I only have two major criticisms that Dove really overlooked here:
1. The range of women - I think if they claim to inspire all women, then they really should have shown a wider range of women. And by that I mean size, age and colour.
2. Why stop at women? Dove, as a brand, are not exclusive to women and men are just as likely, if not more, to suffer from body insecurities and body confidence issues.
What are you thoughts on Dove's Real Beauty Sketches campaign?
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