Tuesday, June 29, 2010

ModLife: So Fresh and So Clean: Acne Edition

So Fresh and So Clean: Acne Edition: "

I can’t say I know anyone who embraces acne. But if you are an already-self-conscious adolescent (or a young adult with the more-than-occasional breakout), these ads can seem unnecessarily cruel. The above ad is disguised as a comic strip entitled, “No one at the Hootenany gave a ‘hoot’ about me (because of my oily complexion).”

The narrative centers around Lynn, a young woman tormented with the horrors of acne. We learn in the first frame, which depicts a party of guitar-strumming guys surrounded by smiling, acne-free girls in the background, and Lynn all alone in the foreground, that acne leads to social ostracization. “That’s why no one notices me,” Lynn laments to her friend. Luckily, Lynn’s friend comes to the rescue with Fresh Start. Lynn tries it out, actually feels it “tingling on her skin,” and at the next Hootenany, Lynn gets serenaded by a guitar-strumming blond guy, and all ends ‘hoot-ily’ ever after.

The next ad starts out with the ‘happily ever after’ success story, featuring a young woman who “has the loveliest face!” because she uses Golden Peacock Bleach Creme. It was not always the case, though. “Once muddy skin, freckles and blemishes made her actually homely,” the copy reads. With this bleach creme, “in only ten minutes a week,” a young woman can obtain clear, “dazzling white” skin.

My question for you, ModReaders, is what about the guys in these ads? They seem to be the reason these girls are so desperate to achieve a clear complexion, but do they face the same pressure to have clear skin? If so, do you think the pressure they experience as young men is as intense as the pressure these young women experience? Why or why not?


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