Ad industry: no more anti-wrinkle-propaganda

Silver Surfers discover the web (image: Ambro)

One morning you suddenly discover it – the first grey hair. No surprised Facebook status updates, tweezers or hair colourings can deny that. But why does something like a single grey hair make shudders run down our spine?

The quintessence of the Facebook updates seems to be that this discovery reminds of an undeniable truth: we can’t escape getting older. But we can hold something against it: a healthy attitude.

And where are we supposed to get that from if the images of ideal beauty proclaimed by the media would rather erase any sign of old age like grey hair and wrinkles in women entirely (cause in men (really unfair!) like George Clooney time only seems to enhance sexappeal).

Thankfully now there are not only female celebs like Meryl Streep, but also ad developers that put a different beauty-image out there: they state that beauty is ageless and should be embraced openly and full of joy.

By the way: ad developers can’t ignore the 50+ generation – online or offline – anymore anyways. The number of the so called ‘silver surfers’, who use the internet to research and buy products, is constantly growing.

New beauty ideals in ads

Some ad campaigns actively react to this phenomenon and show much more wrinkled skin. Two companies that did this especially well in my opinion are Dove and the German brand Schwarzkopf.

Doesn’t “Anti”-Age sound like you should hit anybody wishing you a happy birthday over the head from now on? And isn’t the concept “Pro” Age much friendlier, life-embracing?

The end of the struggle against our own bodies and the new definition of our beauty ideals that comes with it – was long overdue.

Schwarzkopf also shows women of any age in their new ad campaign that even with 72 you can still be chic and beautiful.

Renate Gerdes is the new Schwarzkopf model. In YouTube clips she talks about her life and at the same time has her hair done. She says: “I don’t mind the grey hair at all” as if it was the most natural thing in the world – which in fact it is and should be in our perception of beauty.

But Renate Gerdes should have been the face of a German ad campaign a while ago. At the beginning of 2011 L’oreal was looking for a new face for one of their campaigns on Facebook.

But instead of sticking to what was decided on the social network – namely that Renate Gerdes won – an additional jury vote decided to go with the young, glamorous second places who had less than half of Gerdes votes.

Don’t judge a person by their wrinkles

L’oreal’s competitor Schwarzkopf seized their chance and hired Gerdes for their senior hair product campaign – showing that sympathy counts for more than grey hair does.

In the much quotes ‘aging society’ we can’t allow ourselves to stick to these outdates ideas of beauty for much longer. We will have to stop panicking when faced with natural processes like that.

Instead we should write the pro-age philosophy all over our moisturizer pots and rather take a trip around the world together with our loved ones like Renate Gerdes than frantically keep on trying to smooth out our bodies.

That will then lead to a much more relaxed look into the mirror, less worry-wrinkles and fewer stress-grey hairs.

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