A Bangladeshi hair oil company turned an advertisement into a powerful conversation about domestic violence.
The two minute-long video, which has already been viewed more than 4 million times on Facebook since being posted on April 2, features a woman asking her her stylist to cut off all of her long, beautiful hair. The stylist resists and the tension builds until the reveal that she wants her hair cut short “so that no one can hold it like this again.”
The video then shares some sobering statistics about the reality of domestic violence. According to the spot, every 80 out of 100 Indian women will face some form of violence in their lifetimes. The advertisement is a reminder of the beauty industry’s power to influence conversation among women. The video’s kicker translates in English to, “Hair, the pride of a woman. Let it never be a reason for her weakness.”
Commenters are weighing in with praise for the message and ways to combat the culture of domestic violence on Facebook. “It’s a good ad. To stop violence [and] mistreatment of women, the mind of a man has to be channelized from a tender age by his elders, esp mother, grandmother; also by the teachers in school,” writes Indira Sehgal. “Women don’t have to and shouldn’t tolerate violence at all. Its high time we publicly shun, create a India wide list and shame the men who see violence against women as a matter of their rights,” agrees Vinod Kumar Wuthoo. “Every woman should take up martial arts,” advises Putrri P Nanda.
There’s no one solution here, but there are plenty of conversations to be had. Kudos to this beauty brand for using its voice.