Lynx: Degrading Women, One Ad at a Time
Lynx (also known as Axe), a brand of grooming products for men, is notorious for using sexually provocative and stereotypical heterosexual masculine advertisements that portray women who lust over men that use their products. In 2011, Lynx released an internet ad featuring glamour model Lucy Pinder to promote its “Lynx Dry Full Control” deodorant, targeted toward teenage boys and young men. In this ad, Pinder is dressed in lingerie while holding a turkey and bending over an oven door in a provocative way. While looking toward viewers with an alluring look on her face, her body language suggests that she is submissive and ready to engage in sexual activity. The ad questions viewers, “Can she make you lose control?”, and goes on to invite them to “Play with Lucy” while providing a link to Lynx’s website.
Given the sexual innuendos and image, this marketing ploy aims to send the message that young men can sexually attract beautiful women if they use Lynx’s body spray (which is assumed to be an action that men want to achieve). It is perceived that she will make men “lose control” due to her sex appeal, and that applying the product will enable them to “stay in control” and remain dominant, masculine figures when around her. Ads like this one portray that men should be well-groomed in order to entice and have sex with their “ideal” woman – depicted here as young, white, busty, curvy, and with a face full of makeup. Following the notion that “sex sells”, this ad conveys the idea that women are sexual objects to be conquered with the help of Lynx body spray. Furthermore, it perpetuates Western cultural and societal standards of beauty by showcasing a female body that would garner male attention. There is no doubt that the identity of this brand is centered around sexism and viewing women as objects of male sexual desire. My jamming of the ad will address the problem and absurdity of using sex as a technique to target a generalized, male-specific audience.
My Jammed Advertisement
Through my jamming of the ad, I wanted to showcase the patriarchal views of female sexuality that is dominant in our society. Specifically, I aimed to highlight how this ad focuses on the hypersexualization and objectification of the female body, while also reinforcing certain societal conventions and stereotypes of gender roles. By altering the first caption from “Can she make you lose control?” to “Can she make you feel like a man?”, it more accurately depicts how sexual acts with women can validate a man’s masculinity, and that it is a woman’s duty to satisfy men in these ways. This aids in bringing to focus the views of sexism and male dominance within this ad, as women in our society are often delineated through a masculine narrative. Changing her half-naked body into a turkey, while inviting viewers to “Taste Lucy”, depicts how she is objectified and reduced to merely a piece of meat, ready for consumption by men. Like the turkey she is baking in the kitchen, she also appears to be appealing to eat. Moreover, the altered wording to “Full control of women” presents the purported ability of men to sexually control women. This further invokes the absurdity of the misleading message portrayed in this ad that customers are buying into when they purchase Lynx products, which is that using their products enable them to be irresistible to submissive women.
By making the sexist nature of this ad more obvious, I hope to draw attention to the problems that are present within this ad, as well as emphasize how blatant sexism is unnecessary for advertisement. The sexualized components of the female body get used in ads with no contextual relation to the product. This ad is for a men’s deodorant. However, it objectifies a woman to attract the male gaze. In a society where we are all consumers and surrounded by advertisements, I also hope to deter people from consuming without initially examining the underlying messages present in ads, as well as enable them to pay more attention to the destructive ideas that ads may perpetuate within our society.