Axe Built Its Brand on Male Stereotypes And Trying to Undo the Damage.

starfisherPublished: May 18, 20178 views
Published: May 18, 2017

Axe's latest ad is a major rebuke of everything they've built their brand on — and it's totally awesome.

The ad titled "Is it OK for guys..." encourages its audience to break free of macho stereotypes and rethink masculinity, a continuation of its 2016 "Find Your Magic" campaign.

It's a neat, much-needed departure from some of the old masculinity tropes the brand used to promote.

Tropes like the idea that if you cover yourself in body spray, you'll become irresistible to hordes of scantily-clad women.

Or promoting the concept that the existence of women is a danger to mankind (or at least a danger to the type of manly-men-who-can't-focus-in-the-presence-of-an-attractive-woman-and-totally-wear-Axe).

There's an important message at the latest ad's core about what it means to be "a real man."

Much of the backlash to Axe's older ads stemmed from arguments over whether the campaigns demeaned women — but the attitudes in those ads actually hurt men in real ways.

First, let's address the obvious: Telling boys not to cry, glorifying and enforcing macho stereotypes on men is bad for their mental and physical health.

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