Dove Asks Women To Choose Between “Beautiful” And “Average”

The personal care company encourages women to think about what makes them beautiful.

image via youtube screenshot

Personal care brand Dove, makers of soaps, lotions, and deodorants, is turning heads with new video designed to encourage women around the world to recognize that “beauty is a choice... - and the power of this choice is in [their] hands…"

Part of the company’s “#ChooseBeautiful” campaign, the video depicts women doing just that (or not) when presented with two doors–one marked “Beautiful,” the other “Average”–outside shopping malls in San Francisco, Delhi, São Paulo, Shanghai and London. The women are then asked to describe why they chose the door they did, how it makes them feel after the fact, and if they would make the same choice again.

The video then leads viewers to a website where they can download a “Mindful me” toolkit designed by psychologist Dr. Nancy Etcoff and self esteem expert Dr. Tara Cousineau, as well as learn more about the #ChooseBeautiful project, and, of course, sign up for exclusive features and offers from the company.

Both the video and website seem to be the latest iteration of Dove’s ongoing “Campaign For Real Beauty,” which began in 2004 as a way for the company to “change the status quo and offer in its place a broader, healthier, more democratic view of beauty," as explained by a now-archived website. At the time, that campaign faced its share of criticism, with some arguing it disproportionately featured Caucasians, targeted women’s insecurities, and was hypocritical given Dove’s parent company, Unilever, owning the highly-sexualized Axe personal care brand, as well.

The #ChooseBeautiful video hasn’t escaped scrutiny of its own, with Reductress writer Anna Drezen skewering the ad in a satirical post that recasts the door dilemma as one in which women are made to choose between entrances marked “Beautiful” and “This Door Has A Big Fucking Tiger Behind It.”

I admit, there’s something uncomfortable to me about forcing someone to publicly commit to any sort of label–especially one as potentially contentious as “Beautiful.” Perhaps that's why I particularly like this woman at the video’s 1:44 mark, who rejects the assigned options altogether, turning around and going her own way, instead.

Dove Choose Beautiful | Women all over the world make a choice

That’s beautiful.

[via Design Taxi]

via Douglas Muth / Flickr

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