Brands and retailers are celebrating and empowering women in multiple ways, from product to advertising, this International Women’s Day.
As the #MeToo movement shifts its focus beyond Hollywood to multiple other industries and fields, 2018 is a particularly pertinent time for this conversation. Here, we highlight some of the best brand activations that tap into topics of female empowerment and gender equality.
Celebration is a big focus this year, with the likes of Mattel leading the way. It continues to push both its product lines and messaging as tools of empowerment to little girls with the launch of its Sheroes Barbie range, which celebrates pioneering women in history. Dolls include British boxer Nicola Adams, Mexican painter Frida Kahlo and American pilot Amelia Earhart.
In a more literal way, Johnny Walker has introduced a female figure – called Jane Walker – to its famous bottles, while beer marker BrewDog has launched a satirically pink beer bottle.
The need to align with consumer causes such as empowerment is reflected in the multitude of exclusive collaborations whose launches coincide with this year’s IWD too.
Soap & Glory, as well as the designer Rebecca Taylor, have chosen to show their support for the campaign “She Should Run”, encouraging females to run for political offices. While the beauty brand is raising money through social media, Taylor is taking the more direct step of pledging 10% of all online store proceeds on Thursday March 8 to the charity.
Female education on the other hand has taken priority for a range of companies, including Lancôme, who has partnered with CARE, a non-profit organisation to launch the campaign #WriteHerFuture, to end female illiteracy. Likewise online retailer Gilt wants to “close the gender gap in technology” and aims to give 100% of net profits to the “Girls Who Code” initiative.
Meanwhile Net-a-Porter has collaborated with a series of designers such as Ganni, Zadig & Voltaire and Temperley, to launch capsule collections to support charities that ensure women in need of better health and safety are protected.
Empowerment is otherwise front and center. To celebrate the accomplishments of female athletes and to support the company’s belief “in the inspirational power of sport to break down barriers”, for instance, Nike Women has launched a new campaign starring Serena Williams.
Meanwhile, direct-to-consumer label ADAY has taken to Instagram to share a range of exclusive postcards showcasing its feelings on female empowerment. Users are able to purchase the postcards, with the option to pre-address them to their local senator.
The iconic suffragettes are also receiving a nod, as previously referenced at this season’s NYFW with designer Jonathan Simkhai’s collection. This time, British department store Liberty is paying homage to the historical movement by showcasing photographs by Mary McCartney, who captured eight inspirational women to celebrate.