Monday, June 14, 2010

1-800-Dial Heterosexism

Dial for Men has recently come out with a slew of products for the "manly man" and question whether you are "man enough" to handle their products? This type of sexist, gender stereotypical advertising is nothing new, but Dial has also added a taste of heterosexism to the mix.

Dial's MAGNETIC body wash product promises to enhance attraction through its pheromone infused formula. Not only will it get you clean but you will also be able to get your freak on with all the ladies in town!

According to the product label:

"You don’t need the help, but it doesn’t hurt to increase your odds. Dial® for Men Magnetic™ body wash is clean rinsing and moisture rich, so you get a great clean without drying your skin, and leaves you smelling so good women can’t help but notice."
I am certain Dial meant no harm through this campaign, they are targeting men through the very obvious marketing concept that 'sex sells' Regardless of what you make of their cheesy efforts to build their brand, there is no need for this subtle heterosexism. The majority of the population is straight but many men may be attracted to this product to court a female, male, or perhaps both sexes. Dial would have been better off using gender neutral language to make the product more palatable to all consumers. After all gay/bi men are attracted to those same manly pheromones that straight/bi women like in men.

If you are so inclined, Dial can be reached for feedback through Henkel North America through their customer service form.


Anonymous said...

Wow. Just wow. I've never thought about it before, but now that I'm reading it, it doesn't sound sexist. The object of "sex sells" is absolutely rediculous. I NEVER buy anything sexist, so OBVIOUSLY it doesn't. And I'm also just wondering, wth is up with all the women on everything that sells? What if some people want to see a man? It's this kind of sexist world that we live in that is being destroyed.

Anonymous said...

For crying out loud, it's being advertised as a product which makes men more attractive to women. What gay man would want to buy it, let alone want it marketed to them? It's like bitching that Playboy's advertising is heterosexist. DUH!

Anonymous said...

If it contains a pheromone which makes the scent attractive to women, why should we give a flying f*ck how heterosexist the marketing campaign is? I can't speak for anyone else but, as a gay man, a product which claims that it will make me more attractive to women ain't on my shopping list, so why would I complain that it isn't being marketed to me?

Queers United said...

The manly pheromones straight women are attracted to are the same ones that gay men are attracted to.

Lonnie L said...

I agree that there needs to be a much more open and critical discussion of the ideology of gender in our society, but your suggestion to call the company "if you are so inclined" isn't really a solution. Social problems require social responses and collective discussion to determine those social responses. Telling people they should be angry (by pointing out a problem) and then suggesting folks do whatever they want (or nothing at all) doesn't seem like a solution at all. The proper question is not "why aren't you outraged" but "what are we going to do about it".

Scott said...

A fine example of idiocy. We know it. Dial knows it.

Great comments, by Lonnie, by the way.

I'm an American by birth (lived in CA, CT and NY) and have been living abroad in Australia for the last 10 years. One thing that I can now say about the US is there's a lot of emotional violence in this country. People love making other people feel bad so they can feel good. I'm not saying it doesn't happen elsewhere. The point is, don't let it upset you. If you want to take part in social activism that's a good thing. But don't give the frightened little boys behind Dial the psychological sustenance they are wanting from you. They are probably the same boys that were bullies in school. Seriously, are we missing out?

The ironic thing is, it's the young straight guys who are actually the pawns in all this, and I do understand the concern that this may be a socio-cultural transmission of homophobia and heterosexism. Something that should not be ignored.

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