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  • 04.09.14

After Sketches, Dove’s Newest Experiment Is “The Beauty Patch”

The brand “tricks” a group of women about a skin patch to make them feel and look better. Condescending or illuminating?

After Sketches, Dove’s Newest Experiment Is “The Beauty Patch”

We know that medicated skin patches can help curb harsh nicotine cravings, but what about a nasty habit of unreasonable self-loathing? That’s the question Dove sets out to answer in its latest experiment with Ogilvy & Mather Brazil.

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Last time out the brand asked women to describe themselves to a former FBI sketch artist, then compared the results with how others described them. This experiment introduces a small group of women to psychologist Dr. Ann Kearney-Cooke, known for her work in eating disorders, body image and self-esteem issues. Dr. Kearney Cooke gives the women a patch called RB-X or “The Beauty Patch” to wear for two weeks and asks them to keep a video diary of that time.

The twist shows that the best medicine comes from inside ourselves. Cue eye rolls.


In a statement, Dr. Kearney-Cooke said, “When a woman feels beautiful, she radiates happiness and confidence, which inspires her life in a significant way. These women, like so many others, struggle to recognize their own beauty and it severely affects their daily lives. This ground-breaking experiment was designed to illustrate that beauty is a state of mind and that the power to feel beautiful comes from within.”


The result doesn’t pack as much of a punch as “Sketches” did and feels a bit more like a stunt. What do you think, a valuable lesson in self-confidence or a mildly insulting placebo prank?

About the author

Jeff Beer is a staff editor at Fast Company, covering advertising, marketing, and brand creativity. He lives in Toronto.

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