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Gillette’s Historic Failure

On January 13, 2019 Gillette launched a controversial campaign, attempting to give legitimacy to the term “toxic masculinity”. This was kicked off with a commercial titled We Believe. The ad was created by Kim Gehrig-another woman assuming the role of gatekeeper for manhood. It implied that men were responsible for sexism, bullying, and sexual misconduct. Gillette then pledged to donate to organizations that help men achieve their “personal best”. 

Gillette A

To no surprise, this ad was met with immediate backlash. Men all over social media addressed concerns of the framing. It was also questionable that a woman was supposed to be deciding which form of masculinity is healthy and which is toxic. Furthermore, the term “toxic masculinity” was a problem in and of itself. Ultimately, this video was met with terms such as “misandry” and “virtue signalling”. 

Martin Sykes wrote an article called The Best A Razor Company Can Get, analyzing the problems with the ad and accurately predicted its failure. Originally, this criticism was brushed to the side by Gillette and media outlets that promoted the message. This was supposed to be one of the many occasions where feminists promote a negative message and ultimately succeed. Feminists dominate college campuses, have legal and political influence, and have mainstream media attention. They could flat out lie about a topic, and expect no consequences. There was no need to worry about male advocates or their backlash-well, at least not yet.

However, as time went on, the backlash got louder and stronger. The commercial became the 20th most disliked video on YouTube in April 2019. Men’s rights groups, YouTubers, political speakers, and journalists aggressively criticized the campaign. There were calls for boycotts. A YouTube channel by the name “Edgar Watches” (which promotes marketing for watches) made a short response video to Gillette-showing how to address men with class. That video got a lot more positive feedback.

What Is A Man? A Response To Gillette

Seven months later, Gillette had lost approximately 12 billion dollars (US $8 billion). Gillette found themselves completely backtracking from their original campaign. They decided to focus on male heroes, instead. Their new ad Ben The Aussie Firefighter was a complete confirmation of this shift. 

What We Learned From This
The successful backlash that Gillette received, confirmed several things: 

  1. The men’s rights movement is a lot more influential than people think. Supporters and detractors of our movement generally think of us as a small movement with little financial and social backing. This has been disproven on several occasions. The rise of the father’s rights movement and intactivists, all over the world, proved that MRAs are way larger than most people assumed. Another great example would be the National Coalition For Men, as they became the legal backing for men and managed to fight laws in court. The Gillette backlash is just more proof that MRAs are able to make changes. A lot of men actually have similar beliefs. It’s our job to get those men on our side and fight for justice.
  1. Toxic masculinity is not a popular term. Feminists have been trying to push the term toxic masculinity on the average man for several years. Journalists, professors, media puppets, and politicians have been trying their hardest to promote it. They falsely assumed that men learned to “stay in line” and allow themselves to be attacked with the word 24/7. Clearly, their predictions were wrong. Men still reject the entire concept. This financial backlash exemplified men putting their foot down and saying “enough is enough”.
  1. Men do have the ability to fight back. Feminists have a history of saying and doing outrageous things and getting away with it. Men are just expected to sit there and take it-and we generally do. However, there are many occasions where men reach a breaking point. This breaking point allows us to successfully boycott the parties that have negatively affected us, and demand action be taken to fix it. Gillette is one of the many occasions where men were not putting up with any nonsense. We need to see more of this. Men need to continue to aggressively fight back against any establishment that attempts to force a narrative on us against our will. It’s time society start listening to the opinions of the average man when the topic is about men’s issues

Gillette, a company that should be focused on selling products to customers, managed to create a historical failure. This all could have been avoided. There was no need for their company to make a campaign antagonizing men. If it was a CEO or a manager of the company making a statement-so be it. But, an entire corporation using their finances to engage in gender politics for the sake of mainstream approval? That’s asking for trouble.
Despite my disappointment with Gillette, I’m happy that they did it. Because, this event is a living reminder. This is a victory for men. Evidence to anyone who thinks men can’t change the conversations we’re having.

Source (s)

The Best A Razor Company Can Get
Gillette’s Backflip after “toxic masculinity” backlash

13 thoughts on “Gillette’s Historic Failure

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  4. Thank you for this article. The day the ad came out on youtube, I was not only adding numerous comments in the negative, but I would refresh the page every now and then to see the new totals of likes versus dislikes. With one refresh, I watched 17,000 dislikes vanish. Are we supposed to believe that exactly 17,000 people had a change of heart and decided they liked the ad? Youtube was doctoring the totals so the dislikes would not look as bad as they actually were. We’ll never know the honest totals, because youtube would rather deceive the public than tell the truth.


      1. I’d say most have, they saw what happened to Gillette’s sales immediately after.
        I suddenly stopped seeing anything that was promoting “wokeness” in commercials after that LOL


  5. Thank you for bringing me (us) up-to-date on what is happening on this file.

    A suggestion for future consideration. presently in Canada,

    1. 84% of elementary school teachers are women;
    2. 68% of secondary school teachers are women;
    3. 58% of post-secondary school teachers are women.

    So how does this square with gender equity?


  6. Great article! Just one excerpt: “The men’s rights movement is a lot more influential than people think.”

    I think that when the add appeared many people wondered what they were supposed to think. It must have been previewed with test audiences who all gave it a thumbs-up. Yet, when it appeared men around the world said we’ve have had enough of this crap.


  7. This waste-dump of an advert was the straw that broke the camels back, and got me started using twitter and other social media to express my opinions – the prestage of activism, how I like to call it.

    Let’s see what the feature holds in terms of “leveling up”. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

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