The world of shampoo commercials is lately known more for its bro-tastic goofiness and mild innuendo than powerful social commentary but here Pantene combines its requisite shots of shiny hair with a statement about gender stereotypes. The brand’s newest ad from BBDO Guerrero in the Philippines deftly juxtaposes similar workplace behaviors along gender lines to illustrate the hypocrisy within.
Why is an authoritative man the boss but a woman labeled “bossy”? A man is persuasive, where a woman is pushy. And so on. You might even call it the Lean In of shampoo ads.
It’s another example of a personal grooming brand eschewing the performance breakdown of the product–shiny clean hair–to instead sell itself on image and emotion. Old Spice used humor, Pantene, perhaps taking a page from the Dove playbook, picked empowerment. Not to mention the best use of “Mad World” in a while.