Yet Another Woman’s Worst Nightmare

Dove is sending mixed messages. One commercial implies that my face may actually be more attractive than I think it is. Talk about a morale booster! Watching the reaction of those women as they saw how attractive a forensic artist would imagine them as he drew their missing person posters gave me real hope. It gave me the courage to look in the bathroom mirror, with its “accurate” reflection and horror lighting, and see myself for the acceptably presentable middle-aged woman I probably am. A marketing victory.

Dove followed that with a big but…

“Your face is okay, but that underarm discoloration is pretty gross”. WTF. (Disclaimer: Being under the age of fifty allows me to use current youth code without hesitation nor embarrassment.)

Now I need beautiful underarms! I NEED them. Loss of skin elasticity and insidious gray hairs I can cope with, but off-putting dark spots in my armpits? There’s only so much I can bear before I give up and buy a burka.

The forensic guy wasn’t available so Dove created a dramatization of the pearly, yet unsightly, dark marks that can become visible after shaving.

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Now I’m not stupid. I know that, even though Dove Clear Tone antiperspirant has the effective solution, it isn’t a miracle cure. We need to take personal responsibility for our appearance, not become dependent on an easy fix, so here are a few suggestions:

Solution 1: Don’t shave over the sink with a dry razor.

Solution 2: Wear sleeves.

Solution 3: If you must wear sleeveless tops, keep your arms down. Know the answer? Clear your throat and raise a feminine forefinger. No need to hold up your arm and make ooh-ooh noises. You aren’t five! Unless you are, in that case you should see a doctor about your need to shave.

Solution 4: If you don’t want anyone to see the hideous – and probably visible from space – spots on your nervously perspiring pits, don’t fondle your underarms in front of anyone. Ever. It’s weird.


I have to admit that this is an educational commercial. I learned that I’ve been pronouncing calendula incorrectly in my head every time I’ve read it. It isn’t kal-en-doo-luh, it’s kuh-len-juh-luh. Thanks Dove.

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About Frank Moraes

Frank Moraes is a freelance writer and editor online and in print. He is educated as a scientist with a PhD in Atmospheric Physics. He has worked in climate science, remote sensing, throughout the computer industry, and as a college physics instructor. Find out more at About Frank Moraes.

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