#LuckyLinky Week 15
26th June 2017
#ABloggingGooodTime Week 55
29th June 2017

Women: All You Need to Succeed is Tits & Lipstick!

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I had ambitions from a very young age. I wanted to be everything from a super famous singer, to a brilliant doctor or a cut-throat  lawyer. The world was my oyster and I had the biggest support ever in the form of my powerhouse mama who, for the majority of my childhood, was a single mama, working full-time to support both my sister and I as well as my brother when he came along. Not only did she support us but she also pushed herself in her career and by the time I was 14 she was a Night Sister for Dorset’s community nursing team and I couldn’t have been prouder. I think growing up with such a strong female role model, completely shaped and effected how I would turn out in the future and I honestly believed I could do anything. I went to college, I went to University and somehow I ended up performing on the West End with my mum cheering the loudest from the stalls and the rest of my family there clapping too. When I later made the choice to go into teaching, she was fully supportive. When I wanted to teach abroad she supported me(albeit through tears at losing her baby to Italy for 3 years) when I returned she cheered, when I became pregnant she hugged me, when I gave birth she held my hand, when I became a single mama she hugged me tight and when I decided to pack everything in and become a full-time working blogger she told me I could do it. Well, apparently I needn’t have bothered working so hard in school or even bothered going on to University as according to some recent advertising, I may as well just skip school as the only thing I need is some make-up….

flat lay on white wood of makeup and a phone

Come on guys, it had been a while since I’d had a bit of a rant so I was probably already gearing up for this before I came across a tweet that made me want to throw someone (namely the person responsible for the advertising campaign) out a bloody window. So, the lovely Kate from Along Came Poppy has a friend who happened

benefit make up stand advertising concealer - telling people to skip school not concealer

to be shopping for some make-up from one of my favourite ever brands, Benefit Cosmetics! For my 30th birthday, I threw out all my old make-up and came away with £175 worth of products after being made over by one of the Benefit staff and felt radiant – I have been topping up my cosmetics ever since and from nowhere else other than Benefit.

The tweet I saw this morning ( which you can see here) left me feeling angry, sickened and downright disappointed in a brand I have come to love so much. Kate’s friend took a picture in store of one of Benefit’s make-up displays, in this case it was concealer – but take a look at what the writing on the campaign actually says…”Skip class. Not concealer!” I mean what the hell??! Have we just entered a time-warp back to the 1950s or something?! They might as well have put this in the middle of the store with vacuum cleaners on display one side and corsets and girdles advertised on the other! I’d love to know what was going through the minds of the people who not only came up with this advertising campaign but who also approved it – how the hell did it even get as far as being in store?!

I was raised by a brilliant headstrong single mum who pushed hard and got a career she deserved. I’d like to think that I have my kick-ass mama moments, raising a daughter by myself as well as creating my own business half of which I would not have managed to do without the brilliant education I received. I would also like to think that my daughter will get and want to get a good education in the future and will be more concerned with where she is heading in life than what she looks like getting there! Maybe that’s where I went wrong – perhaps I should not have bothered with my degree and spent more money on lipstick and keeping my boobs on my chest and then I could really have achieved everyone’s lifetime ambition of getting onto reality T.V. We could always start a new series, how about “The Only Way is Blogging!” Has a nice ring to it don’t you think?!woman laptop work blog coffee computer phone

When Kate tweeted, she did tag Benefit so that they would have a chance to respond to the outrage that followed the discovery of this campaign to be met with “Hi Kate, thank you for your feedback. Please know that we value all levels of education; we apologise for any communication that did not reflect this. We are currently taking your comments into future design considerations xx” I’m sorry but I think that is an absolute load of crap. If they really did consider all education important then this advertising would never have even made it past the draft table. Instead they thought they were being clever and creating an artistic and funny campaign designed to lure in all the young girls who will then start thinking “I knew it. I knew it! I knew I didn’t need to bother with school. I’m just going to not bother, cover myself in as much make-up and get to exactly where I want to be in life!”

Jesus – don’t we have enough trouble keeping our children young these days thanks to social media and reality TV?! We really did not need this extra shove from a well-liked and trusted make-up brand. Of course, I then

a woman holding her head blurred

discovered this wasn’t the only time that Benefit had been involved in women shaming! Back in July 2015, Benefit were called out for joining in with a trending hashtag “#MakeAMovieAFatty” where you change the name of a movie into something derogatory like “Forest Dumpy” or “50 Stones of Grey!” They basically decided to join in on body shaming anyone who doesn’t conform to beauty industry stereotypes – well I’ll shove my hand up in the air and admit that I don’t conform, so what shall I now be known as “Fatty in a Tutu?!”

They originally tried to brush off their involvement in the hashtag by saying they were just joining in and having a laugh like anyone else doing it. However, they later back tracked and apologised as well as removing the tweets, but not before someone managed to screenshot them. Perhaps it was all too little too late as another hashtag began trending; “BoycottBenefit!” Obviously this brand is still in business but do you know what? It just makes me sad. I feel like I’m surrounded by a group of guys in a nightclub all paying me attention because they’re trying to “Pull the Pig!” Yeah, they’ve made me feel that horrid. (You can read the full #MakeAMovieAFatty story here.)

1 boy and 1 girl dress up in neone coloured suits over their clothes little girl looking at the camera on a play phone and little boy looking at her. alldone outside on grass with trees behind

They say they’re sorry, but they aren’t. If they were, this campaign would no longer be out there for vulnerable young teens to see and think is okay. This is yet another thing that concerns me about the future for my daughter. What with changes in the government and advertising like this being allowed, what kind of future does she have?! Is there going to be a day when I have to turn around to her and say “Alyssa, I’m sorry but you need to forget about books and work on your lip lining techniques. You also need to get a better push-up bra so that they can see your assets. Do that and you’ll either get a reality TV job or a husband.” Dear God, perish the thought. Our young ones should be encouraged to reach their full potential whatever that may be. They may want to be a journalist, an astronaut, a model, a writer or an ice cream seller on the beaches of Dorset. Do you know what?! I don’t care what she does as long as she has the opportunity to do anything she wants and for now that starts with an education as well as a healthy approach to food and living.

Shame on you Benefit. I’m sure you won’t care but you just lost yourself a customer. Disgusting.

21 Comments

  1. They sound like an utterly thoughtless brand that sells on being cutesy, witty etc. I would really like my brands to leave the ‘funny’ to actual funny people. Sell on quality. They are not a brand I’ve bought from before although always been tempted but now really really not tempted. I’m so super surprised by the hashtag movie story as well. Seriously!? I know some people think campaigns like Dove are cynical but i’d rather that than blatant idiocy. Good rant m’dear.

  2. I’m sure the marketing department at Benefit could have come up with a more appropriate campaign, maybe encouraging girls to stay up all night studying and then reaching for the concealer. Oh well, what do I know about marketing.

    Unfortunately, I think the damage may well have been done and as they say, there is no such thing as bad publicity.
    Fab rant though, I’m right there with you, although I’m not a huge fan of Benefit but that’s a whole other story.

  3. Rhian Harris says:

    To be honest, I doubt I’d even have noticed it! I tend to have my eyes shut most the time these days. Good on you and your Mum for being such strong women though #ablogginggoodtime

  4. It’s shocking! A message that I would avoid sending my girls at all costs. Such a shame because their makeup is really nice. It will definitely make me think twice before buying from them again #ablogginggoodtime

  5. Oh dear oh dear oh dear, it makes me want to weep on the one hand and yell out in utter disbelief and rage on the other that a highly public beauty brand like this have lowered themselves to some kind of Victorian age where women should just look pretty, and not much else really. I thought we’d come so far with the likes of Michelle Obama cheering on women because everyone in this world, male or female, deserves an education and to be valued for who they are – not what they bloody look like! And all this time I’m desperately trying to instill these values into my girls, because they are worth so much more than make up and lipstick. Love your rant, and I’m ranting with you and hopefully if we all rant, this stupid archaic superficial bollocks will come to an end. #ablogginggoodtime

  6. Helen says:

    When I read the title of your post I thought ‘well I’m f***ed’ then having minute boobs and one lipstick…somewhere…I think. When I read the post I felt my blood boiling! Benefit have been a favourite brand of mine, because their stuff, while it costs both arms and legs, works. Shame though because I can’t see past this now. I can’t get over the anger I feel towards companies who continue to profit by fuelling women’s insecurities. If we felt good about ourselves they would be in the shiz big time. It’s one thing making you feel bad about your body, but to actively pursue the idea that one should ditch their education in order to look how a brand want you to, come on?! Women all over the world are fighting for an education – I wonder if Benefit would see fit to donate to any of their causes- a supply of free concealer may be? Wow I’m mad now. #ablogginggoodtime

    • Mummy in a Tutu says:

      haha sorry it is a bit of a click bait title but thanks for feeling the rage with me. so angry at one of my fave brands 🙁

  7. I can see the humor of the advert; however, the overall message isn’t the one that any responsible adult would want to portray….
    What a shame…
    Jodie
    http://www.jtouchofstyle.com
    #ablogginggoodtime

  8. Michelle says:

    I’ve never heard of this brand but I’m glad I know this now. I don’t buy a lot of make-up as it is so I’m not completely up on the trends and what-not but this is definitely disgusting! Thank you for bringing this to our attention! #ablogginggoodtime

  9. Tammymum says:

    I saw this ad the other day and couldn’t quite believe it. I mean how ill advised and poorly thought out?! It’s disgusting really and I am really ashamed as I brought this concealer (before I saw the add I might say). I actually would not have spent any money on it had I seen the advert first. It is such a shame as benefit is a brand I like but this has really and truly put me off them! #ablogginggoodtime

  10. I’m still in complete shock that this campaign was ever thought up in the first place, never mind making it through the selection process and out into stores. There are a million other slogans that could have been used with that picture that would have better conveyed their message. It’s pure idiocy.
    #Ablogginggoodtime

  11. Well done for writing such a great piece on such a vile advertisement,it was you who brought it to my attention. I like you LOVE Benefit make up , it’s really nice but I’ll not buy it again.I’d feel like I was condoning their nonsense,I’ve a teen girl at home and this is the last message I want her to convey #ablogginggoodtime

  12. Great post, am totally with you!

  13. I can only think their marketing team is made up of a bunch of sexist men! It’s terrible and ill-thought out! Urgh, the fat shaming is so bad too!

    #ablogginggoodtime

  14. Thoughtless and tasteless. My own post I linked up to #ablogginggoodtime alongside your is to do with pink, the objectification of girls and gender stereotyping. I want my daughter to have every opportunity in life but she won’t be buying from this brand ever!

  15. Tubbs says:

    I honestly think that some brands are so caught up with being edgy, funny etc that they don’t think how these things look in the real world. Or they just don’t care. Drives me nuts! I hadn’t seen that Benefit campaign, but it’s pretty rubbish. I want more for my daughter!!

  16. Jaki says:

    I too am a huge fan of Benefit but they have really let themselves with this one. How did it even get signed off?! Their lack of remorse in their tweet response is pretty dire too. Dreadful. #ablogginggoodtime

  17. Lucy At Home says:

    I actually cannot believe this advertising slogan ever made it past the drawing board. WHAT ON EARTH WERE THEY THINKING??? I can’t decide if I’m gob-smacked or outraged. Both I think. This is the worst message to be sending to young, impressionable girls. It is disgusting and should be taken down immediately #blogcrush

  18. Oh well, bang goes another customer too. I’ve not bought their stuff for years but this has sickened me. Sometimes I feel like I’m on a one woman campaign against idiotic dumbing down of intelligence in society. But then you write something phenomenal in the way only you can and I realise I’m not alone. This is perfection from start to finish. Fatty in a Tutu and telling your daughter to put down the books and pick up the lip liner just made me howl…albeit over a ****ing depressing issue. Now you KNOW I’m angry as I don’t curse much in writing! I could go on and on (as you well know). #ablogginggoodtime

    • Mummy in a Tutu says:

      awww thanks lovely glad I had you howling as your response had me giggling away too. you are by no means alone sweet. fist bump mama!! xx

  19. That is so bad. It definitely sounds like they have weighed up the costs in pulling the *stupid* campaign against the immature girly coolness that might buy into the slogan and decided that they’r rather capitalize on stupidity and naivete than apologise and do the right thing. Really bad PR.
    #ablogginggoodtime

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