Monday, February 20, 2012

Sexist advertising

 After bemoaning the sexism inherent in Kix's long-time slogan, I was initially pleased to see this Huggies ad in my coupon circular.  After all, there's a manly dad with a baby, and Huggies targets his fellow dads as baby goods consumers.  

Upon closer inspection, though, I saw that this ad may, in fact, slap back-handedly at mens' parenting skills.  These diapers are supposed to stop leaks better.  The ad encourages putting it to the ultimate test.  Why does it promote that for dads?  Are they implying that dads change diapers more rarely than they should?

Perhaps I'm reading too much into it.  Maybe they're funning with the way dads like to hold their kids.  This manly, slightly scruffy, tattoed, tee-shirt-wearing hot dad holds his dad at a crazy arm-curled angle.  Baby seems to love it.  And maybe sex symbol dad couldn't do that if the diapers weren't dependable.  

Something feels rotten to me.  Wouldn't moms like leak-preventing diapers as much as dads?


Karen Gorss said...

This is intriguing. It could refer to a father playing with his child more physically than a mother (a different sexist stereotype), or it could be intended to mean that fathers aren't good at putting diapers on properly.

Just thought of another one: Could be hinting that fathers don't change diapers as often as they should (or as often as mothers do).

Overall I'd say it's sexist no matter what, but at least it's not pretending that child care is mothers' sole province and responsibility. Baby steps? (ha ha)

Paige said...

If they are trying to say something sexist, but none of us can figure out exactly what it is, then I'll take failed sexism over mission-accomplished sexism (Moms love Huggies Diapers!) any day.

JFo said...

K: I believe the ad does hint that dads don't change diapers as often as they should. It's as if the ad said "Go ahead and try cooking, dads. Our new miracle pot from Calphalon makes it harder to burn things."

P: It's probably true that it's better to see dads in parent-oriented ads with which I have quibbles than to always see moms.