Kotex Ads

October 11, 2006

Both of the ads use the motive of being a “proper woman” as a reason to buy their product. The first in the context of teaching proper societal behavior, the second by enhancing the woman’s sexuality at a point in the month where she feels the least sexual. Each add exists within the social context of that particular decade. The first article comes from the 1950’s, where “women’s issues” were not to be discussed and everyone had to behave in the proper “Leave it to Beaver”family way. Thus, in this ad, the actual advertising for pads occupies very little of the ad, and the rest of it is overshadowed by the photographs and the writting, so that it seems more family friendly than pads. The second ad is far more in one’s face about what it is selling, and the message isn’t hidden as in the first ad. In the context of the time period, women’s issues had been brought more to the forefront and pubesant education had started being introduced, so the whole concept of the period wasn’t as taboo is society. This ad attempts to romanticise the menstral cycle by using the drawing of a very attractive woman appearing half-dressed. It’s as if this ad is telling women to be more relaxed and beautiful during their period, which is typically the opposite of what they really feel, by buying the product.


image courtesy of: http://www.kimberly-clark.com/images/kotex_70s.gif
This ad is from the same time as the second one, though it paints an entirely different picture than the one of the beautiful model. When women first see this, they laugh because they can’t help but agree witht he shirt. This provides a more understanding view and that since Kotex understands what the woman is going through, then women should buy Kotex. This is very different from the previous ad which portrays and ideal of beauty rather than understanding.


image courtesy of: http://www.americanartarchives.com/nurick_kotex_cos42jun.jpg

This image, created during World War 2 creates a very patriotic image of the period. This ad tells women, “since you have to go to work for your country, then buy kotex so you won’t be inconvenienced by a period”. The war-time placement of the ad makes it completely different from the other ads in that it not only sells a product but it promotes patriotism.


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