Since the launch of a new ad Tuesday promising women, "You're more beautiful than you think," Dove has received both praise and criticism. In the ad, which continues the theme of the soap brand's ongoing Real Beauty campaign, a sketch artist draws women's faces based on the women's descriptions of their own appearances and strangers' descriptions of them. For each woman, the two resulting sketches differ substantially, leading the women to consider that perhaps, as the tagline says, they've underestimated their own physical beauty.
Reactions to the ad have been mixed. It has gone viral on Facebook with women sharing it and leaving comments on Dove's page like, "Thank you for advertising in a way that builds people up instead of pulling them down! If only more of culture were bent in this way. It was beautiful." However, other Facebook commenters and bloggers have called it out for focusing too much on beauty -- there's so much more to women than their faces -- and for assuring women not that they are beautiful but that they are closer to the conventional beauty ideal than they thought.
"The more 'beautiful' facial representations seemed to all be thinner and younger-looking," Kate Fridkins wrote on HuffPost. "The real take-away is still that women should care whether or not a stranger thinks she is beautiful," argued Erin Keane at Salon.
The makers of the video above, posted to YouTube channel NewFeelingsTime, seemed to take more issue with the sentimentality of the ad -- the tearing up, the tinkling music, the soft-focus sunlit shots. They're voicing this criticism in the form of a pretty brilliant video parody in which the subjects are men, not women. Our favorite moments include:
- One male subject's answer to the question, "What would you say is your most prominent feature?": "Probably my bulge."
- The guy who tells the sketch artist, "The older I've gotten, the more stunning I've gotten."
- One female "stranger" describing a male subject to the sketch artist as "kind of dirty looking."
- EXTRA tearing up, tinkling music, and sunlit everything.
- The revelation of who these men think they look like.
Watch the full video for its ultimate message for men, which differs quite a bit from the original ad's tagline. Then check out the original here.
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