This Trans-Inclusive Ad Campaign Is So Incredibly Powerful

by Devon Preston

Over the past five years, the LGBTQ community has had their fair share of highs and lows. On June 26th, 2015, the Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriage, and some argue that this was the biggest gay rights victory in modern history. However, with more representation in the media came a huge backlash from conservative officials. At the beginning of 2016, North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory signed a bill into effect that required citizens to use the bathroom of the sex that they were given at birth. The Public Facilities Privacy & Security Act is extremely controversial because it prevents members of LGBTQ community, in particular, transgender individuals, from using the restroom that most closely aligns with their gender identity. Despite making huge advancements within LGBTQ rights, growing representation and acceptance of the gay community has caused many conservative people within this country to revolt against the changes that are taking place—which means that education and representation of the LGBT community are more important than ever before. We need influential allies that are willing to stand up to the bullies and the bigots and just this past week, the LGBT gained a new trans-inclusive supporter: Secret Deodorant.

The antiperspirant company, whose slogan is “Strong Enough For a Man, Made For a Woman,” showed that there is “no wrong way to be a woman” with an advertisement starring Karis Wilde, a genderfluid model, and activist. The ad tackles the bathroom “issue” head on. Secret boldly addresses the anxiety that many people who do not identify with their birth sex face when using public restroom facilities. We have seen so much attention put on conservatives who feel that transgender people are a danger to society, however, we rarely see the media presenting the other side of the story — the fear of discrimination and possible violence that trans people face when going against gendered institutions such as public bathrooms.

It’s fantastic that huge brands — such as Secret, CoverGirl and Thinx — that typically market to an exclusively female audience are broadening their brands to be inclusive of women who may not have been born with female genitals, and it’s exciting to see the media become more inviting towards gender variation. We can’t wait to see what other brands will come up with to support the LGBTQ community, because change is coming, whether some people like it or not.

Photos via Secret

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