Deodorant; Pandering to the Lowest Common Denominator

I am a male. I’m sure many of our more logical readers could have deduced that much from my writings and my literary voice, but the fact that I’m male is prominent. In fact, some might say it defines me as the individual that I am. So suffice it say, I can and WILL perspire. To all of our NOT so logical viewers, that means I will sweat and stink up something FIERCE, all assuming that I don’t wear deodorant, which I do. Though, it’s only been recently that I discovered something very interesting about the deodorant I could and, most likely, WOULD buy; I have NO idea what it smells like before I smell it.

Now, some of you might possibly be questioning my sanity and my ability to live in a world where we are sublimely ruled by our senses, and to you I say this: go to a shop, find your favourite deodorant and PLEASE for the love of the universe TELL me what you THINK it’s going to smell like and what it REALLY smells like. For example, I PERSONALLY buy a lovely type of deodorant called “Cool Impact” that I am promised uses “Silver Ion” technology. So first of all, I STILL don’t know what it smells like before purchase. Well, no, that’s not entirely true, NOW I know what it smells like because I’ve been wearing it since it first came out, but when I first walked into my local Drug Store (for everyone who doesn’t know, a drug store is a place where one can purchase over the counter pharmaceuticals like Advil or Motrin, in addition to prescription medication; it really is a FANTASTIC invention, but I digress) I had NO idea what to expect for the simple reason that the NAME told me nothing.

Cool impact is actually quite interesting namely that I think of getting hit in the face with a piece of ice the size of a conventional football (European or American, I don’t really care) whenever I hear it. Suffice it to say, if you name something “Cool Impact” I think of painful things, things that want to explode and release cold energy from the negaverse, etc. I definitely don’t think of a refreshing scent that’ll cover my own -ahem- NOT so refreshing scent. Alright, so we’re clear on this right? The name is insane and doesn’t tell me what it smells like? Well that’s good because I’ve got ANOTHER problem. What, in the name of the universe, is SILVER ION TECHNOLOGY?! What (and I’m actually NOT joking here) did they go to the local nuclear power plant and just STEAL some ionized SILVER?! How does one even go ABOUT DOING such a thing?! Is there a hotline for these people?! Am I going to DIE because I was born with genes that make me smell like a 400 pound gorilla in LABOUR?!

The answers? No, I don’t know, no, and absolutely not because I don’t smell that bad. Well, no, those aren’t ALL the answers see, there IS one thing that I haven’t mentioned, and frankly? It’s a gender thing to boot. Male deodorant is given, well, MASCULINE names. Stuff like cool impact, or matter horn, or silver bolt (which honestly makes me think of a really camp DC superhero [sorry DC, but I’m looking at you]), or (and this one’s my personal favourite) ADVENTURE. I’m not even lying about that last one, the thing’s called ADVENTURE. Seriously, google ADVENTURE deodorant, you know what? Here, I did it for you. It’s the first link.

In comparison, female deodorant is given less, oh what’s the phrase? HEART POUNDING? Yeah, heart pounding; female deodorant is usually given less heart pounding names (and I know that last sentence’s syntax seems off, and it is, so let it go); name likes Ultimate smooth, or powder fresh (which sound more like what they do and what they’re made of then anything else). Seriously. Males get ADVENTURE, and females? Well they get powder fresh. And in case you’re wondering, I’m not getting into the whole “gender image in the media” thing right now. Instead? I’m getting into the deodorant names are CRAZY thing right now because it is INSANE how crazy some of the stuff we buy is named. I’m honestly waiting for the day Gillette offers the AK-47 razor, capable of “utterly murdering your hair follicles in a sensation that leaves you feeling smooth, sexy, and (just because I’m really having fun with this) MAAAAAANLY!!!”

I mean, why not? Old Spice has already offered a type of body wash that apparently gave Terry Crews to turn off the sun and then (because it’s too cold) turn it back on again. I’m also pretty sure he added another sun and blew up a few buildings, but you get my point. Well, my TWO points; (1) deodorant names are insane and provide NO information to the potential buyer on the SCENT and (2) marketing and ad campaigns pretty much pander to the lowest common denominator and we (as consumers) are perfectly alright with that so long as we know that our shave is super smooth (and capable of bringing down a third world country dictatorship faster than twitter [I’m looking at you Egypt]) and our legs will be able to “bring out the goddess” in ourselves. Take that last sentence how you will.

As always, this has been your Admin, and DO remember! Always look on the BYTE side of life!

-EK

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