Shaving razor company Braun recently faced criticism on social media over an advertisement that generated controversy among conservative commentators. Users noticed that the ad featured a model who is transgender and has undergone a double mastectomy, shaving their beard.
Some individuals on social media claimed that the brand was endorsing what they perceived as a ‘mutilation cult of gender.’ Additionally, there were suggestions of giving the brand the ‘Bud Light treatment.’
The promotional image in question was discovered on Braun’s website and initially appeared to depict a male model shaving. However, a closer look revealed that the subject was a biological woman who had undergone a double mastectomy.
The image displayed the model’s facial hair being shaved using what reports indicated to be the Braun Series X Hybrid Trimmer, while also showing double mastectomy scars on their breasts. A spokesperson from Procter & Gamble, the company behind Braun, clarified that the image represented real Braun consumers.
Nevertheless, critics heavily criticized Braun upon seeing the image. Canadian conservative activist Chris Elston, popularly known as ‘Billboard Chris,’ weighed in on the matter, commenting, ‘Braun is now celebrating the mutilation cult of gender.’
Conservative commentator Ian Miles Cheong drew parallels between Braun and other companies such as Gillette and Bud Light, which faced significant backlash after including transgender individuals in their marketing campaigns.
Braun has followed razor company Gillette’s footsteps in aiming their marketing efforts towards a progressive audience. Renowned Canadian psychologist and author, Dr. Jordan Peterson, echoed Cheong’s sentiment in a tweet directed at Braun: ‘@Braun is looking hard for its @Budweiser moment.’ Criticizing the brand further, Peterson posted another tweet asking, ‘Hey! Do you woke scumrats at @Braun think this evil butchery is some kind of fashion statement? This is Mengele level brutality, and you think it’s moral to capitalize on it.’
Oli London, an anti-trans surgery activist from the UK, also shared their perspective, stating that ‘BRAUN features a transgender biological female with double mastectomy scars in their new shaving advert for their men’s shaving range.’
Maya Forstater, the executive director of the activist group Sex Matters, expressed her disapproval of Braun’s campaign and provided a statement to UK outlet The Telegraph.
Forstater expressed her disbelief in Braun executives’ understanding of ‘inclusivity’ and claimed that the brand had inadvertently supported what she referred to as a ‘social contagion,’ which could potentially evolve into one of the most infamous medical scandals in history.