Inspiring Beauty? A Critique of Wardah Cosmetics’ Ad Campaigns

This post was written by guest contributor Afia R. Fitriati (@AfiaRF).The gaffes in the latest ad campaign of Indonesia-based Wardah Cosmetics are as clear as daylight – so clear that a student in my marketing class had raised an issue with it even before I had the chance to see the commercials."If their selling point is halal – and thus Muslim-friendly – cosmetics, then why do they promote skin-lightening products? Isn't it discriminatory to … [Read more...]

Pakistan: A Country of One Color?

 This post was written by guest contributor Emaan Majed. On my grandmother’s dresser, there is a pink tube of cleverly marketed whitening cream. She applies it daily, despite being quite pale, despite claiming to hate the colonizers from whom it stems, despite being a health-freak and knowing that it contains hints of mercury. My grandmother is not unlike many Pakistani women in this aspect. My progressive, liberal, ‘I have never done a racist thing in my life’ aunts each own a bottle. Th … [Read more...]

Wall of Shame: Ramadan Television in Egypt

Now that Ramadan is over, I can get it out of my mind and scream hard on how women were portrayed in the Egyptian TV throughout the whole month.Women are seen as sex objects: there’s no better way to put it than this cliché; it is as simple, as shallow, and as degrading as it has always been. One would think that the so-called Arab Spring would make some difference, after people had watched women side-by-side with men, playing their crucial role in all the battles since the first day of the r … [Read more...]

The Women of Deaffinity

Deaffinity is a group whose mission is to “help break barriers and improve the quality of life for the BME [black and minority ethnic] D/deaf community.” While advocating on behalf of the deaf community, Deaffinity provides culturally sensitive services to the Deaf community, such as their Youth leadership and Engagement program, and is also involved in fostering awareness within the hearing community by creating various campaigns.Their most recent campaign, which won first place at the London … [Read more...]

This shouldn’t be a surprise.

A sexist Carl's Jr. ad? You don't say!For their new turkey burger, Carl's Jr. has rolled out an ad campaign with Miss Turkey in a bikini.You'd think this would get old, right? Ugh. … [Read more...]


And speaking of trash bags, here's a poster for Germany's International Human Rights ad campaign:The translation reads: “Oppressed women are easily overlooked. Please support us in the fight for their rights.”Outrageous.Thanks to Kawthar for the tip! … [Read more...]

Ethics or Shame Policing?

Here's yet another video campaign on why women should wear hijab:This movie shows a woman stumbling through a dark and scary forest, running away from snakes and wolves and unknown--yet terrifying--dangers.But all of that goes away when--surprise!--she puts on a headscarf.The differences in the movie between life without a headscarf and life with one are startling. The movie shows a woman without a headscarf in a bright red dress (a color which often signifies visibility and sexuality), … [Read more...]