This clip, published in January 2014, is a part of beauty and skincare brand Dove’s #BeautyIs campaign, which seeks to “start a global conversation about the need for a wider definition of beauty.” The first part of the clip illustrates a series of mother-daughter teams discussing their own personal insecurities about their appearances, such as wearing or not wearing makeup, comparing themselves to others, aging and wrinkles, and general discomfort with their looks. In the second part, professional photographer Michael Cook organizes an experimental photography workshop at a high school in Great Barrington, Massachusetts in which mothers and daughters use “selfies,” or smartphone photo portraits taken by the subjects themselves, in order to create their own definition of beauty and challenge their own perceived shortcomings. After printing out and displaying the portraits in a gallery, other girls wrote compliments on Post-It notes and attached them to each photo. While nearly all the women and girls had critical things to say about themselves in their testimonials, these Post-It notes illustrated the divergence between self-perception and outward appearance: one woman’s insecurity may be exactly what another perceives to be a unique and beautiful physical feature. By incorporating the power of social media and smartphone technology, the video illustrates to viewers the personal power they have in re-defining what is truly beautiful.
On February 6th, 2016, during Black History Month and one day before her Super Bowl halftime show performance, Beyoncé dropped the song and video for “Formation” on her YouTube channel and on Tidal, Jay-Z’s streaming service. The song's lyrics are characterized by Beyoncé reframing stereotypes traditionally used in a derogatory way towards African-Americans into empowering statements which celebrate Blackness. For instance, she states:
“Run the World (Girls)” is a song recorded by Beyonce Knowles in 2011, with the accompanying music video directed by Francis Lawrence. The video displays a post-apocalyptic war-zone in which Knowles and an army of scantily-clad women square off against men in riot gear – all through the use of seductive dance moves. The video ends with Knowles ripping off the military general’s badge and putting it on herself. The aggressive lyrics center on the superiority of women, with much of their power being attributed to their intelligence, money-making abilities, and “persuasion”.
Beyonce’s 2008 hit Single Ladies epitomizes her uniquely powerful brand of girl power that’s come to define her entire career. The song sends a positive message to women about finding strength after a breakup, independent of a man. But how well does this message translate to a group of seven year old performers? This video clip, uploaded on Youtube, is from a children’s dance competition in which a troop of seven year old girls perform a routine to Beyonce’s Single Ladies. Dressed in lacy red and black outfits, their dance moves mimic Beyonce's sexually suggestive routine.
In 2011, the Bic company began to market a new pen product: "Bic Pens for Her". This back-to-school ad captures the essence of their pitch, drawing consumers' attention to the "fabulous styling" and "smooth writing" of the female-oriented Bic pen. In truth, the there were only minor color and style differences between the Bic Pen for Her and the regularly marketed Bic pens, although the Bic Pen for Her came with a slightly more expensive price-tag. The marketing effort received a good deal of pushback from consumers, many of whom took to the comments section of Amazon.com to post sarcastic reviews. "Since I've begun using these pens, men have found me more attractive and approchable," one commenter joked.