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“We’ve let our hair out, gone back to work and made our voices heard, so why are we still putting up with uncomfortable and painful sex?”

Now THAT, Durex, is a great question. One that we're SO glad advertisers are starting to ask, seeing as women make up the huge majority of consumers. It's hella dumb not to cater for our needs, if you ask us.

The renowned condom brand also have a range of lubricants, which they are marketing with a pretty great ad, if we do say so ourselves.

The ad uses examples of women fighting for our rights, using our voices to protest, to work, to rebel against societal norms, but yet many of us don't speak out against painful or uncomfortable sex.

Dryness down there is such a common aspect of our daily lives, and the ad points out that our body lubricates itself differently depending on our hormones and the time of the month.

It's perfectly normal that a lot of us would need a little help sometimes with the 'ol lube. Especially during sex, when most heterosexual men don't seem to realise that we need water for the slide to be fun, so to speak.

An advert which shows a protester, female body hair and a working mum is refreshing, so we're even more chuffed that they brought painful sex into the equation.

Millions of women face this issue in their lives, and it can be incredibly frustrating. We all deserve to enjoy sex and have as many (multiple) orgasms as physically possible, and lube is a tool in our armoury to help us achieve that.

Take a look at the video below;

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On November 29th, Deborah Ross of The Times wrote what can only be described as a SCATHING article about influencers which began like this;

"I have a dream. It is not a big dream. I am not Martin Luther King. I only do dreams on a small scale, so it is a small-scale dream and my small-scale dream is this: might there be any way we could do a find and replace on the word “influencer” so it is replaced by “detestable freeloader” wherever it appears? So we all know what, in fact, we are dealing with."

Yikes. To add to the drama-fest, YouTuber and Blogosphere's Influencer of the Year 2018 Melanie Murphy has responded. 

We have to say, Murphy makes some noteworthy points;

Starting off her 13-minute YouTube video with a cool "Okay Deborah, calm down", she proceeds to explain the hypocrisy behind Ross' points with a level of clarity which is hard to deny.

Ross essentially slated influencers in her article, describing them as 'detestable freeloaders', essentially people who deserve to be hated because they receive complimentary items and give nothing in return.

Murphy responds by issuing the point that the media in general is funded by advertising and marketing, for example, on the bottom of Ross' article had a sponsored post, without which the article possibly would never have been read.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Promotion and marketing absolutely surrounds us, from celebrities such as David Beckham for Adidas, Beyoncé for Pepsi, Justin Timberlake for McDonalds, Jessica Simpson for WeightWatchers, Brad Pitt for whatever cologne he's feeling that day, Julia Roberts for Lancôme, Hannah Witton for PlayStation, Holly Willoughby for Marks & Spencer etc etc.

It's inescapable. However, just because they receive free objects doesn't mean that they give nothing in return. 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Happy Holidays from the House! @house99 #House99 #HomeToYourNextLook

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The issue which Murphy takes with Ross' article is the sheer hypocrisy as well as the generalisations which she makes. She places every influencer in the same category, when many of them promote noble causes such as LGBT+ charities and organisations, cruelty-free and paraben-free beauty products, health foods, nutrition, sexual health organisations, disability and accessibility rights, chronic pain activists, and more.

Jameela Jamil's i_Weigh movement has become hugely successful, and empowers people to weigh themselves on their overall worth as a person rather than their body mass index. Jamil suffered from an eating disorder for years, and now uses promotion and Instagram to create a unified group of people who value and respect themselves. She also is a major campaigner for banning airbrushing.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Melanie Murphy claims that every successful creative has the support of brands behind them, and receive freebies. Many of them self-fund their projects, and use the money for other causes, others simply give away any freebies which they receive.

Murphy also points out that just because they gain complimentary products does not mean that those people aren't extremely hardworking. Many influencers balance their life online with their family and a side-job.

"95% of what I show, what I wear, I pay for myself," she claims. Through advertising and word of mouth, companies can use influencers for their branding, but this doesn't undermine the level of thought which goes into choosing which brands to work with.

Murphy works with Always pads to talk openly about periods, Barclays, who sponsor Pride, a show which explores bisexuality, PicMonkey, Wella for hair dyes which work against allergies, Holland and Barrett for cruelty-free health and nutrition products.

Numerous influencers and their agents are hugely picky about who they work with, the brands must make sense for the influencers for them to collaborate with them.

"I'm always so bloody proud of my paid-for content, always. The money these brands pay me enables me to write a novel and work on more artsy things like short films which I invest in myself but don't get money back."

According to the Youtuber, the media wouldn't survive without branding and advertisements. From YouTube ads to websites, podcasts, radio, television, newspapers and magazines, advertising is saturated in our industry.

For Deborah Ross to call followers of influencers 'morons' is entirely unfair, from Melanie's point of view;

"Under-researched drivel such as this which contributes to the negative rhetoric that surrounds bloggers and influencers, thousands of hard-working people. Some of which juggle a family or another job."

Many believe for Ross to declare that influencers have done nothing to merit this lifestyle is flawed and reductive, Murphy herself demonstrates a great engagement because of how she chooses brands to work with;

"I never try sneak anything in, I'm never shady. I am lucky and I'm very grateful, I don't swan around."

Lastly, Murphy places emphasis on the fact that YouTube is a community which supports one another, they collaborate and shout each other out and lift each other up. In the journalism industry, there is minimal collaboration and no support between competing publications;

"You sit and write and you get aid to do that, there was a time where people would scoff at your job and say that that's not a real job. We actually support each other. You're not going to see The Times supporting an article from another publication."

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

It's International Day of Disabled Persons. This year's theme is “Empowering persons with disabilities and ensuring inclusion and equality.” I think about this every day. Empowerment, inclusion, equality. It's in every story I tell. In every adventure I have. Every relationship I am in has navigated it to some extent. The other day I was talking to a friend who said, "I don't even see you as disabled, you just sit a lot for someone so active.” "I think I know what you mean, but I am disabled, it's not bad to me to be seen as disabled. When people say that, it's like they're saying, in order to accept you, I have to separate you from this thing I have a problem with. 

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She describes the loneliness which perpetuates society, and how YouTube can be used as escapism, or for self-help, for comedy, entertainment, advice or even just to connect;

"A lot of people are lonely and it's a beautiful thing to be able to connect with people through words through a lens. Families are smaller, the Church has collapsed, community has gone to shit. I feel like through my monthly blogs I encourage people to connect with their real-life friends and family"

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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As Murphy points out, building a following of thousands or millions doesn't just happen for no reason.

'Detestable freeloaders' aren't just empty vessels of advertisers; they're entertainers, they're singers, actors, writers, comedians, models, creatives, editors, lighting experts, agents and so much more.

Do you agree?

Feature image: teneightymagazine.com

Article by Kate Brayden

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Being a woman in 2018: what does it mean to you?

“You can be whatever type of woman you want to be,” Saoirse Ronan says, looking into the camera. 

“You can be an individual but still be a part of something bigger than yourself,” adds Lupita Nyong’o. 

Directed by artist Anne Collier, Calvin Klein's new ad is for their newest fragrance Calvin Klein Women.

Watch as it unfolds into a series of vignettes that provide a glimpse into Lupita Nyong'o’s and Saoirse Ronan’s creative inspirations.

Both women reflect on figures from the past that have inspired them and helped to shape their identities as  the women they are today. 

Saoirse plays a Nina Simone record and talks about her admiration for Sissy Spacek, while Lupita works on a script and flicks through collaged photography of Eartha Kitt and Katharine Hepburn. 

Raf Simons, Chief Creative Officer, Calvin Klein says, ''in this campaign, Anne Collier brings  to life a powerful narrative of confidence and self-expression, celebrating the profound inspiration women draw from one another. The support of this bond empowers a great sense of freedom.''

For the new fragrance think a woody floral; fusing strength with fragility, freshness with sensuality, a play of contrasts, as infinitely varied as the personas of the women who inspire it.

The light pink-hued fragrance builds around three core ingredients – fresh eucalyptus acorns, delicate orange flower petals and rich Alaskan cedarwood.

“Our goal is to make the message inclusive and inspiring. To do that we broke with tradition – from the distinct fragrance and packaging, to the campaign creative featuring Lupita and Saoirse and the icons that inspire them,” said Simona Cattaneo, Chief Marketing Officer, COTY Luxury.

As the voices of a new generation of modern femininity, who better than Saoirse and Lupita to embody this campaign? 

Women around the world can join in on social media by using the hashtag #IAMWOMEN and share a photo of females in their lives that have shaped them into who they are today.

We just love the whole concept, don't you? 

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Global retailer, H&M, have pulled a garment from their product line following widespread backlash this week.

The controversy surrounds the retailer's decision to use a black child to model a hoody emblazoned with the slogan 'Coolest Monkey in the Jungle'.

Responding to the criticism, H&M made the decision to remove the image from their website, and issued an apology which outlined their plan to pull the garment from their line.

"We are deeply sorry that the picture was taken, and we also regret the actual print,” read the statement. “Therefore, we have not only removed the image from our channels, but also the garment from our product offering globally.”

According to The Irish Times, the retailer is launching an investigation into the origin of the print and its subsequent advertisement.

“It is obvious that our routines have not been followed properly. This is without any doubt,” the company said. “We will thoroughly investigate why this happened to prevent this type of mistake from happening again."

Rapper, The Weeknd, was among those incensed by the garment's racial undertones, tweeting that he was offended by the image and would not engage with H&M on a professional level in the future.

"Woke up this morning shocked and embarrassed by this photo. i’m deeply offended and will not be working with @hm anymore…" he wrote in a tweet which has amassed more than 200,000 likes since yesterday.

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Coca-Cola's latest advert is receiving mixed reaction online.

In what is presumably at attempt to celebrate the Saudi government's decision to allow women to get behind the wheel for the first time, the short clip shows a father teaching his daughter how to drive.

In a scene that pretty much every learner driver can relate to, the nervous woman makes several failed attempts at driving the vehicle before pausing to take a sip from an ice-cold bottle of Coke.

Much to the shock of her father, the young female driver proceeds to cruise down the desert road with confidence as the words 'Change Has A Taste' appear across the screen.

While some viewers have praised the advert for acknowledging the introduction of the new law, others have accused the company of exploiting the historic ruling.

“The ad, which debuted on November 2, celebrates the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s decision to lift its longstanding prohibition on women drivers, focusing on a heart-warming scene of a father teaching his daughter to drive," a spokesperson said. 

“The campaign touches on the brand’s values surrounding diversity and inclusion and aligns with Coca-Cola’s commitment to enable the economic empowerment of women.”

You can check out the full clip below:


 

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Back in April, a number of celebrities and influencers received warnings from the Federal Trade Commission reminding them to be transparent when promoting products on social media.

90 letters were sent out to influencers and the brands they were working with to clarify the guidelines on how to post sponsored pictures and videos to social media.

The letters highlighted how to do it without violating the American organisation’s disclosure guidelines.

Now, Women's Wear Daily has procured a list of celebs and influencers who received the not-so-gentle reminders that sponsored posts must be clearly marked as such.

The list included the likes of Kourtney Kardashian, Jen Selter, Shay Mitchell, Heidi Klum, Lilly Ghalichi, Amber Rose, Emily Ratajkowski and Ashley Benson.

According to WWDthe letters read:

'The FTC’s Endorsement Guides state that if there is a ‘material connection’ between the endorser and the marketer of a product — in other words, a connection that might affect the weight or credibility that consumers give the endorsement — that connection should be clearly and conspicuously disclosed, unless the connection is already clear from the context of the communication containing the endorsement.'

 

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'Material connections could consist of a business or family relationship, monetary payment, or the provision of free products to the endorser.'

The FTC explained that the disclosure of advertisements via social media influencers should be clear, conspicuous and use 'unambiguous language' that wont be mistaken for an organic post. 

With social media comments proving that fans of celebs and influencers want more transparency from their icons, this move can only be positive in the pursuit of regulation within the online influencer industry.

 

 

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After the absolute disaster that was the Pepsi/Kendall Jenner ad, most companies would probably shy away from inserting politics into their campaigns.

However, Heineken is stepping up to show us exactly how it is done. 

The beer brand's latest ad put two people of opposing political beliefs through a variety of situations, before revealing to the other what they have said about issues they hold close to their heart. 

There are three pairings chosen for the ad experiment. 

The first pair sit on opposite ends of the feminism debate, with the male counterpart believing that feminism is an excuse to engage in 'man hating' and 'misandry.'

The female in this situation is staunchly feminist and believes there is still work to be done to improve women's rights. 

The second pairing is made up of two men who have opposing opinions on climate change. 

One guy thinks that climate change is a minimal issues, which should have less of a focus in society.

His experiment partner feels that climate change is seriously important. 

In the final pair, a man and woman have opposing views on a very personal issue. 

'You're a man, be a man, or you're a female, be a female,' he says.

The woman in this situation is transgender.

All of the couples are made to do team building exercises, and share quite a few details about their lives.

In the end, the pairings opposing beliefs are revealed, to initially awkward but ultimately heartwarming results. 

Check it our for yourself: 

 

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Pepsi's latest campaign advert has been pulled.

The ad, which was protest-themed, received a lot of online backlash, and last night, the brand apologised to its consumers and said that they "clearly missed that mark."

However, after the apology was delivered, social media was none the happier.

Many were confused as to why Pepsi apologised to Kendall, and some were just flat-out unhappy about the whole situation.

Here are some of best the reactions on Twitter:

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It looks like people are pretty angry with Pepsi and Kendall Jenner today.

The company released a new campaign yesterday, called Live For Now Moments Anthem, which starred the 20-year-old going from a photoshoot to a protest.

The two and a half minute video sees the reality star in a blonde wig while being photographed, only for her to notice a protest taking place on the street nearby.

Kendall removes her wig, takes off her dark lippy and joins the crowd of protestors. She then hands a can of Pepsi to a police officer, while the protestors cheer and applaud.

However, it's not going down well on Twitter:

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Oh, McDonald's. How did you get it so wrong?

As Paddy's Day is fast approaching, so is the release of the Maccy D's Shamrock Shake.

But, its new ad campaign basically has absolutely nothing to do with Ireland.

The video was released on Twitter and shows a man playing the Shamrock Shake as if he was playing on bagpipes.

Bagpipes are Scottish.

Then, Stonehenge appears on screen.

Stonehenge is in England.

Of course, there was outcry from Irish fans the minute it went up, and some of the backlash is brilliant:

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If you were streaming the Oscars live last night (well done), you may have noticed a pretty cute Android ad during one of the commercial breaks.

Viewers in the US were totally charmed by the ad, which drove home a strong anti-bullying message through the medium of an animated rock, paper and scissors.

And everyone was in agreement that the whole thing was pretty damn cute:

The ad was masterminded by Dublin animator Conor Finnegan, working with London-based design studio Nexus London.

It's not Conor's first run-in with the Oscars – his 2012 animation Fear Of Flying was longlisted for a Best Animated Short by the Academy, after scooping a heap of awards at film festivals in Ireland and beyond.

Check out the ad here:

 

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The Milk Tray Man is retiring… but he's on the search for a replacement.

If you know a man who likes jumping out of moving trains, who enjoys gift-giving and who looks good in a black polo neck, this could be the job for him.

The chocolate-bearing hero was last seen on our screens in 2002, and he was known for going to daring extremes all for the sake of his lady love's happiness.

But the revamped Milk Tray man won't just be asked to act like the next James Bond – he'll need to be courteous and sweet to boot.

"The key point is the new Milk Tray man won’t be chosen just for his derring-do, diving off cliffs into shark-infested waters," explains Cadbury spokesman Tony Bilsborough.

"It will be as much about traits such as thoughtfulness."

The perfect boyfriend, really.

In a new ad, set to debut on ITV tonight, former Milk Tray Man James Coombes bids us farewell before jumping out the window (standard), leaving the office free for his descendant.

Know someone who's interested?

As long as they are over 18, they can apply or nominate someone else on the New Milk Tray Man website here before the end of November 2015. 

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