GOOD NEWS
04/13/2017 12:05 pm ET

These Fake Beauty Ads Have A Secret Mental Health Meaning

*watches them on repeat*

Eau C D, anyone?

Project UROK, a mental health initiative focused on ending stigma through storytelling, launched a series of videos recently that flips the script on corny beauty ads to make an important point about mental health. Mainly, that a put-together persona ― like the glamour you see in commercials for perfume or lipstick ― isn’t always indicative of real life. And that’s totally okay.

The group’s first three parody ads tackle anxiety, trauma and obsessive compulsive disorder. They’re part of Project UROK’s latest initiative, called #YouAreFine.

The commercials cover the symptoms that come along with mental health conditions, such as panic attacks, extreme stress and rumination. Anxiety and OCD are represented by perfumes, called “Anxiété” and “Eau C D,” and trauma is personified through a long-wear lipstick.

Awareness campaigns like Project UROK’s parody ads help alleviate some of the misconceptions surrounding mental health disorders and highlight to complicated nuances of living with one. Jenny Jaffe, the founder of Project UROK, told Refinery29 that the initiative’s comedic take through the commercials is a way to help people talk about these serious issues.

For example, the fake commercial takes a humorous approach to addressing how mental illness is not always obvious.

“She seems confident and carefree ― but is she?” says the narrator in the Anxiété perfume video. “She is not.”

That’s a vital message to share: Mental health issues, which affect one in five American adults, are real medical conditions that are complicated and debilitating.

There’s also a stereotype that mental illness is shameful, which often prevents people from seeking professional help. Experts say stigma and discrimination surrounding mental health issues is one of the largest factors in why people with them stay silent.

Ads that sell the public on the importance of taking mental health seriously? Sign us up.

Take a look at the other ads from the #YouAreFine campaign below:

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