It’s a little hard to believe that I made it to SCREAMING number 19 (!) and I haven’t screamed at all about advertising. Especially since THERE ARE SO MANY BAD ADS, YOU GUYS.
Like these two, which arrived in my inbox care of my friend Sarah, who is one of this column’s most avid readers and is also much funnier than me and should probably just write this column instead. Quoth Sarah:
“I was enjoying Glamour‘s March issue and then came across the two ads below: ‘A clean beaver always finds more wood’ followed closely by Caveman Carries Woman To Bedroom, Remains Unoffended by Personal Odor. Yep, not one but TWO ads within 20 pages of each other, suggesting that either the quantity or quality of boners in your life are at risk unless you stuff some chemicals in your lady parts.” (Sarah is A+.)
WHERE DO I EVEN START. The first (and incredibly het-normative) bon mot — “a clean beaver always finds more wood” — comes courtesy of Playtex, which is selling some sort of Fresh + Sexy “before and after intimate wipe that gets you ready for whatever comes next.” (MOAR WOOD.) There’s also one that reads “a clean peach always gets picked.” (Bullshit. I would like these claims substantiated.)
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The print campaign also includes equally nonsensical versions about boners — see: “a clean pecker always taps it” and “a polished knob always gets more turns” — but those ads, too, are aimed at women having P&V sex. Because EW! HOWEVER WILL YOU GET THE GROSS LADY JUICE OFF YOUR JUNK? What happened to, I don’t know, A SHOWER? Why do we need fancy camomile-infused sex-cleaning wipes? Oh yeah, that’s right: because vaginas are gross.
To that end, the second ad, from pad purveyors Always, is designed to make you feel even more self-conscious about your raging crimson tide than you probably already do! Because EW! PERIODS! Not only should you worry about embarrassing leaks, you should also be acutely aware that no one will want to have sex with you ever again if you smell like a human. A sweaty, fleshy, bleeding human.
Give me a break. It’s already exhausting — and EXPENSIVE — to be a woman, between all the waxing and plucking and buffing and moisturizing. And now I’m told that not only am I expected to be almost hairless, I need to also keep up the illusion that I emanate vanilla and lavender from my pores? I think I speak for all women everywhere when I say screw off.
Advertisers: can you stop enforcing the antiquated idea that vaginas — self-cleaning, self-regulating organs, I might add — are dirty shame holes? Kthx.
Jen Zoratti is a Spectator Tribune columnist and a freelance music scribe. Follow her on Twitter @JenZoratti.