Sarah Haskins On Bizarre Beauty Contraptions & Why Marketers Don't Get Women

Illustration for article titled Sarah Haskins On Bizarre Beauty Contraptions  Why Marketers Dont Get Women

In addition to the latest hilarious Target: Women, there's an interview with NPR, in which Sarah Haskins talks about mocking badvertising and crappy marketing toward women:

But first: Have you ever been convinced that technology from Europe will make you more beautiful? I haven't. But for some reason beauty companies think women will fall for that shit.

The instant facelift ones are the worst, because they really prey on the aging, as if there's anything you can do about aging. And Sarah's right: If you had money, you'd get surgery, but you don't! So you waste it on stuff that will never work. Sigh.

By the by: I saw this Rejuvenique commercial one night AND COULD NOT SLEEP FOR THREE YEARS AFTERWARD.


Kidding. Sort of. Anyway, Sarah Haskins was asked about all the crazy crap that's marketed toward women. She says:

A lot of people ask me like, how can marketing to women be better? And my default answer is, I don't want it to better, this is my job.

But seriously folks!
She also explains:

I think the big problem, though, stemmed from the fact that everything is - the products are very clearly divided into genders, either because of something with our gender roles, like laundry, or maybe, you know, they find the angle being weight loss, and that's a lady thing, so that goes to yogurt. I mean, that's what the yogurt ads are about, weight loss and, like, regularity.



I was an American studies major in college and we learned about the cult of true womanhood, which was sort of what women were told in the media in like the turn of the century in the Victorian era at that time, which emphasized this piety and purity and submission and domesticity, and how the women sort of control the hearth. And from that, you know, they control the home. And I think the legacy of that has not changed. It's still with us in the media and we've just added to it. Certainly a lot of women's products are still like, do it for your man.

And now I think what's been added to it in a modern mix is this all sense of like, fem-powerment - like you go, girl. You are jogging, you know? And that shouldn't be our prime goal: jogging and going to yoga class without having cramps.


She also admits she likes the Geico commercial where a cash stack with little eyeballs sings to you. It's a gender-neutral idea! But, she says: "I don't think anything — when it's going after women particularly, in trying to frame them in a certain way to make you buy the product — is really going to not be ridiculous in some way." And the proof is in the Target: Women pudding.

Sarah Haskins in Target Women: Beauty Contraptions [Current]
Why Marketers Are Wooing Women All Wrong [NPR]


Earlier: All Sarah Haskins posts
Condoms, Cleaning Supplies & Crap: A Q&A With Sarah Haskins

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"The instant facelift ones are the worst, because they really prey on the aging, as if there's anything you can do about aging."

Tell that to the new "Age Management Clinic" that just opened near my office. Seriously — age management. #sarahhaskins