OK Van Heusen, I found you skulking around the archives of Bored Panda, looking very well-rested, so let’s talk, you and me. Your bashing will start with the obvious objection to your tie ad here: chauvinistic imagery of a kneeling woman dressed in a bathrobe, while a fully dressed man reclines in bed. While the concept hits home immediately, the advertising execution leaves the modern mind with questions like “Why would you get into bed like that?”

Chauvinist Van Heusen Vintage Ad: Man's World Power Ties

Let’s Talk Ad Copy: “Show her it’s a man’s world”

The attention-grabber in this vintage ad is maddening for any woman, but especially to a post-60’s woman (and an increasing percentage of men). The alliteration in the smaller print doesn’t take the bite away from the thoroughly chauvinistic language. I hunted down more of the ad copy and a portion reads “brand new, man-talking power patterns that tell her it’s a man’s world…and make her so happy that it is!” The implication being that women LOVE to be dominated and men NEED to dominate for the good of the relationship. Another implication is that the tie is NOT for work; rather a man must wear a tie to keep his household in order.

A Van Heusen ad hawking ties for men was a real shock, considering my own perception (because of modern-day Van Heusen Outlets) that the brand caters to women. How does it strike you, seeing this vintage ad with modern eyes?

This entry was posted on Thursday, January 5, 2012 and is filed under Content Marketing.

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