The Dove “Real Beauty” campaign has been around for awhile now. In it, the soap company pushes the idea that anyone can be beautiful and that soap is not just for the “pretty” people. The newest entry into this campaign puts even gives even more perspective about beauty and self-image. As a result, the “Dove Real Beauty Sketches” is a singularly moving video.

For the ad, a forensic sketch artist named Gil Zamora draws faces of women who narrate their own looks from behind a curtain. Then, never seeing the original woman, Zamora draws another sketch — this time, however, he bases his work on the description of the woman by another person.

The difference between the two images is stunning in each case. When describing themselves, the women highlighted their faults. But in the image described by another person, a more objective explanation of features creates a sketch that a) looks more like the real person and b) is far more beautiful.

What does any of this have to do with Dove soap? Technically, not much. The interesting idea has more to do with how toiletry and cosmetic companies market their products. Most of the time, we’re told that beauty comes from a box. And if we can’t be made beautiful by the box, it must be our own fault.

In this ad, the idea is that the beauty is there and just hard to recognize. The soap won’t make you more attractive, but the point is that the consumer is already attractive. She can use any soap she wants — she’ll just **want to use the one that complimented her in this way.

Thus, the advertising works. How could you not like Dove after the product truly made you recognize and love the beauty you already have?

Posted by:Laurel Brown