What were Gillette thinking, producing an ad with an inflammatory political agenda? What’s that got to do with razors? Well, absolutely nothing, but that doesn’t stop the ad from being completely brilliant.
The anti ‘toxic masculinity’ message of the ad is undoubtedly positive, but being cynical, you could assume that Gillette just wanted to make some noise and didn’t care about the message. It’s totally possible, they knew the ad would excite the left and I’m sure they knew that it would anger the right. They only had to look at Nike’s Colin Kaepernick campaign to know that many would loudly boycott. But it’s true what they say, there’s no such thing as bad press.
The add makes it clear that Gillette wants to be seen as a forward looking company that moves with the times, that they acknowledge that men don’t just need to change, but that many want to as well.
Perhaps it is just an act to sell razors, but that doesn’t really matter. Brands have power and when they use that power to spread a positive message it can only be a good thing.