So, so fucking excited about this parody video we shot in response to Dove's campaign (which I've super uncool-ly ranted about at length).
You're as beautiful as we think you are: that's the message from corporate interests, mainstream media, the pro-dysmorphia beauty industry. Unfortunately, nobody can be all THAT beautiful, or Dove wouldn't make any money. Mis en scene of typical beauty campaigns includes minimal diversity, hypocrisy, impossible standards and, most critically, the all-importance of external validation. The women in the original ad can only move forward once they are affirmed as conventionally beautiful. Buy the message, buy the products, let them disabuse us of what's important. God forbid anyone describes these women as ugly, or fat, or big-nosed or dark. What would they do???
Dove's all about "real women"- whoever the fuck that is. Here, we offer "real women"- the blond, the dark-skinned, those subverting gender and artifice, the extremely dysmorphic. In exchange for their desperate self-hatred, Dove offers a coupon of beauty, into the pageantry of the light skinned and thin. Grateful, baptized, ready to begin anew; these "real women" embrace their day pass. What, however, is the take home message for female consumers in the lose-lose set up staged by companies like Unilever, the producer of the natural lit "You're more beautiful than you think" campaign as well as Axe ads, rendering women as fawning, superficial dumb fucks?
Dove's latest surge of manipulated self love is just them walking back its bread and butter message: you're as beautiful as we think you are.