International Women's Day: 10 inspiring ads celebrating women

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After years of stereotyping and objectifying women, advertising has lately taken a turn toward empowerment. Here are 10 ads from around the world that speak to women everywhere.

There has been a revolution in ads about women in recent years, with issues such as puberty, gender roles and health taking center stage. In celebration of International Women's Day (March 8), Campaign, with help from social video experts Unruly, looks at the 10 most inspirational ads celebrating women.

February 2016

Ariel  #ShareTheLoad

This ad from India went viral after Facebook's chief operating officer, Sheryl Sandberg, called it "one of the most powerful videos I have ever seen." It shows a father writing a letter to his daughter apologizing on behalf of every dad who has set the wrong example by never doing the housework. The ad finishes with the line, "Why is laundry only a mother’s job?"


October 2015

Barbie Imagine the Possibilities 

This amusing spot encourages young girls to be whatever they want. Mattel is looking to empower females by allowing girls to imagine the possibilities from being a soccer coach, professor or a vet.

April 2015

Ram Trucks Courage Is Already Inside

Breaking out of stereotypes is the theme of this spot. It showcases a range of women and asks the question, "Have you ever thought, 'I could never do that?' " It urges women to throw it into another gear.

June 2014

Always #Likeagirl

The groundbreaking #Likeagirl campaign aims to give confidence to young women and fight female stereotypes. It asks young women to "run like a girl," '"ight like a girl" and "throw like a girl." Then it asks young girls to do the same — with a different outcome. The ad asks, "When did doing something 'like a girl’ become an insult?"

June 2014

Verizon Inspire Her Mind

This follows a girl from toddler to teenager showing how she has been dissuaded from getting involved in technology and science. It says, "Our words can have a huge impact. Isn’t it time we told her she is pretty brilliant, too?"

June 2014

Hello Flo First Moon Party

This humorous ad deals with a girl's desire to be a woman, with hilarious consequences. To be part of the "cherry slush club" of girls that have gotten their periods, one girl fakes it with Rubylicious nail polish. Her mother throws her a Full Moon Party, inviting all family and friends to celebrate. When she admits she faked it, her mother gives her the Hello Flo period starter kit.

Feb 2014

Covergirl #GirlsCan

The makeup brand is about encouraging girls to take up the challenge to break barriers and turn "can't" into "can." The spot shows celebrities Queen Latifah, Ellen DeGeneres, Sofia Vergara, Katy Perry, Janelle Monae and others fight against the statement, "Girls can’t."


Dec 2013

Pantene Philippines Labels Against Women

Male and female employees are viewed differently in the workplace. The spot shows that when a man is considered the "boss," the equivalent woman is considered "bossy." If a man works late he is "dedicated," while a woman is "selfish." The ad finishes with the words, "Don’t let labels hold you back — be strong and shine."

April 2013

Dove Real Beauty Sketches

To show women, "You’re more beautiful than you think," Dove has a forensic artist draw sketches of their faces based on the view they have of themselves. It also asks someone else to describe their face, and their view was much more positive. The ad fits into Dove’s wider, ongoing campaign to make beauty a source of confidence, not anxiety.

January 2013

Sport England This Girl Can

Sport England encourages women to participate in sport with the opening statement "I jiggle therefore I am." It tells women to forget about any of their bits that wiggle and to have the confidence to do whatever exercise they want to do. 

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