Social Construction Exercise: Venus Razors, Emily Stockdale

6 Oct

Venus razors are an example of a product in our world today that is “gendered.”   This commercial razor is branded as “feminine,” and though it is built a bit differently than a “man’s” razor, it essentially does the same thing.  This ad is just one of the many Venus razor adds of its kind that advertise that  being  a “goddess” means having smooth legs.  Really, who do  we shave our legs for?  Perhaps for ourselves, but most likely to appeal to the opposite sex, or what the image of “womanly” has been socially constructed as in our culture.   It is thought of as dirty our unkempt for women to have body hair. Venus suggests that removing your hair is the way to be “radiant” and powerful, like a goddess.   Therefore, womanly is thought of as hairless.   In this add in particular, bright colors that are associated with femininity are used.  Women with different lifestyles are shown, but in the end, the commercial is tied together with the image of a girl who appears to be out on the town, looking sexy and “attractive” to a man.

It is hard to imagine the Venus razor ever being connected to or used by a man.  It is interesting because Venus is actually a branch of Gillete, which is a  major men’s razor company as well.  Men’s razors are advertised and gendered just as much as women’s.  Dark “manly” colors and metal tones are used to show off a sleek metal razor that appears heavy and masculine, in contrast to the bright pink or purple almost weightless look of the Venus.  It is interesting because there is really no razor here that is non gender-specific.  Each razor is designed for the individual to fulfill the gender role of being manly or womanly.

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