Advertisements primarily reflect upon the common ideologies of society, keep us engaged and leave a long-lasting impact on us.
One thing that has been common in most Indian ads spanning over different eras is the objectification and stereotyping women. These regressive Indian ads show how we have a history of misogyny.
1. This Bournvita ad from 1960s that linked a woman's happiness with that of her husband's.
It used the tagline: Pati ki khushi aapki khushi hai.
And all through, I thought bournvita was a drink for kids.
2. This jewellery ad showing a woman wanting to choose jewellery for herself because she could not choose her husband.
This is problematic on so many levels.
3. This sewing machine ad that said: Train her to be an ideal housewife.
4. This Brooke Bond tea ad that showed a woman drinking tea for its liquor-like taste because women wouldn't drink, right?
5. A vaginal tightening cream ad promised to make women feel virgin again in order to impress and make their husbands happy.
6. This detergent ad reinforced the idea that washing clothes is only a woman's job while men just keep complaining.
7. This Ponds cream ad that says: She's lovely, she used Ponds.
8. This bank's ad urging its customers to start saving for their daughters.
9. Yet another ad saying gifting a sewing machine to your daughter on her wedding day will bring a lifetime of happiness.
10. This Jack and Jones ad from 2016 that objectified women.
11. This electric shaver ad that said it's the surest way to a man's heart.
12. This sanitaryware ad that showed tired women enjoying a refreshing bath after a hectic day cooking.
13. This Indian whisky brand's ad showed men gazing at women and justified it with the tagline: Men will be men.
14. This Head & Shoulders ad warned men that using women’s products will take away their masculinity.
Their tagline was: Stop. Before you stop being a man.
15. This Godrej soap ad that used the quote: My face is my fortune....
16. This ad by a maid hiring service portrayed them as gifts for women.
17. These Nando's ads that sounded cheap and vulgar.
18. This Fair & Lovely ad promoting 'saaf gorapan'. WTF is saaf gorapan ?
19. This vaginal wash ad that promised freshness and fairness.
20. This hair removal cream ad for women that asks: Why use a razor when you are not a boy?
Oh and what's up with women in the ad shaving already shaved legs?
21. This pressure cooker ad that implied that the cooker a man buys depends on the amount of love for his wife.
They have this tagline: Jo biwi se kare pyaar, woh Prestige se kaise kare inkaar.
22. A brand used #TestedByRealMoms in its dishwasher ad and faced flak for lacking men in the entire narrative.
In times like these, #VoltasBeko dishwashers have made lives easier and chores convenient. They're #TestedByRealMoms and bear their seal of approval. So, trust and bring home a dishwasher today. pic.twitter.com/RvC5bMTs66— Voltas Beko (@VoltasBeko) July 16, 2020
23. Ad agency JWT India posted a cartoon showing three bound and gagged women in the rear of a hatchback to promote Ford's Indian hatchback.
Intended to illustrate the small car’s rear storage space, the ad used the tagline: Leave your worries behind with Figo’s extra-large boot.
24. This Kellogg's ad showed a woman losing weight because she wanted to dance in a wedding ceremony and reinforced the 'perfect body' idea.
25. This Snickers ad showed that apparently all the annoying habits are associated with girls. It conveyed the idea that heroines are the ones nagging and throwing tantrums with its tagline: Tujhe bhookh lagti hai toh tu heroine ban jaata hai.
It conveyed the idea that heroines are the ones nagging and throwing tantrums with its tagline: Tujhe bhookh lagti hai toh tu heroine ban jaata hai.
26. Almost all the men's deo ads show women getting attracted to men just by sniffing. These ads perceive that women just need good smelling men for arousal.
27. This Pepe Jeans ad tried to impose gender stereotypes and biases by depicting a young girl in feminine clothes post-makeover.
Ad campaigns play a major role in exacerbating the existing ideological flaws in society and these ads just added fuel to the fire.