Buttwipes: Now Exclusively for Women!

I've got 99 problems and now also, skidmarks to worry about. So, 100 problems.
Publish date:
September 7, 2011
feminism, ads, toilet paper, advertisings

I want to talk to you guys about freshness.I don't know if you've seen the ads for "flushable freshness wipes." They show women of all ages and races slipping each other boxes of disposable moistened toilet paper, like copies of "Lady Chatterly's Lover" during the jazz age. (By "ages and races" I mean there was a black woman, and an old lady in a towel.)

The implication here is women are probably still too afraid to talk openly about the sensitive, female issue of babywipes, and owe it to one another to start some kind of whisper campaign. You know, like the rhythm method or the Lysol douche. Except here, the incentive for "telling a friend" includes a coupon!

OK, sure, I will literally do anything for a coupon. (Ask my parole officer! He's so mad.) But I'm a little hesitant here, because I'm not quite sure why this was a campaign that specifically needed to be aimed toward women. Sometimes I'll see a commercial for some non-gender-exclusive product that's aimed at us because it's being positioned for moms (pizza rolls, stain stick) or because it's something that is still fairly gendered in the collective consciousness (yogurt that's supposed to taste like desserts, that scented oil you plug into your wall and take deeeeeeep sniffs of). But since when do women have a monopoly on wanting a crack you can see your reflection in?

I was unsuccessful in finding a guy-version of this commercial where an old guy in a schvitz hands his young black friend a box, or where a satisfied-looking middle aged man buttons up his cardigan in front of a mirror, secure in the fact that he can go to book group without mud butt.

Although, there was one where a woman talks about what a clean bottom her husband has while squirting her friend in the ass with a hose, no I am not joking. I don't watch a whole lot of SpikeTV or men-only channels, so I can't say whether or not there's an ad they didn't put on the Internet for their Talk to Your Homies About Skidmarks campaign.It's hard to make a commercial about keeping your ass clean. I get it, toilet paper company/the ad firm that handles your account! But what I don't get is why this is positioned as a women's issue. Sure, maybe you've already conquered the market on babies when it comes to baby wipes, and you're looking to expand the range of your product. I get it, I watch AMC. But can I just be a little reactionary here and say that I think butt freshness is something that crosses gender lines?

It seems like making this a WOMEN'S HYGEINE issue just contributes to the idea that women are stinky and dirty. Sure, we are, but when it comes to the ass crack, so are men and transgender people and horses. The better question I would ask, if it were my ad firm, is who DOESN'T need a cleaner butt? Ballerinas and snakes?

We've already codified genital cleanliness. Can we not make thorough wiping a solely female issue? I would get Gail Collins to weigh in on this, but I think we'd just giggle too much and spray each other in the butts with hoses. Anyhow, freshness wipes for women! Available in fine retailers in the perineal care aisle. Now that I've told you guys, I think I can get my coupon.