While plenty of hair removal campaigns for women are subtly trying to indicate that the only way you're attractive is without body hair, Veet's new campaign "Don't risk dudeness!" goes one step further and suggests that without their wax strips, you risk turning into a man.
Despite the fact that both men and women have body hair, the campaign reinforces a standard of beauty dictating that body hair is only for men. There are a few versions of the ad (which premiered Monday during Dancing with the Stars), each with a woman who suddenly finds out that even though she "shaved yesterday," she's got hair growing where she doesn't want it — on her legs, under her arms and by her bikini line. She also embarrassingly finds herself at the tail end of judgmental glances from those around her, like a cab driver who won't pick her up, a pedicurist who calls her situation "terrible" or her boyfriend who is shocked to find himself in bed with a man. (This last situation reads as homophobic, as though it's obviously the worst thing in a world, because men can't have sex with men.)
One ad even shows a woman in an ambulance who has just gotten in an accident. As the paramedic goes to cut off her clothes she says, "Please, not the panties," the implication being that she's wearing ladies underwear, which is funny because she's turned into a man? Or as the blurb below the video reads, "Like mom said, always wear clean underwear and never be unprepared"? and she is unprepared. Maybe it's both! This female paramedic is really going to be shocked and appalled by the hair "down there."
"Don't Risk Dudeness! Never again say 'But I just shaved yesterday?!'" screams Veet. "With VEET, easily remove unwanted hair so you stay smooth for up to 28 days! Don't manhandle your underarms — wax the dudeness away! Banish undesirable prickles and hail taxis in triumph! Embrace your smooth feminine side and never be caught off guard with VEET." I've got a slogan for you: Good grief; please cease! As a bonus, my suggestion is one that your many angry consumers will actually be down with.