A new Gillette ad features a trans man shaving for the first time. Gillette put the ad to air on 23 May. It features Canadian Samson Bonkeabantu Brown and his father.
Posting on Facebook, Samson said he wanted his father involved because of his support.
In the ad, the young man discusses growing up and his transition.
“Growing up I was always trying to figure out what kind of man I want to become,” he says.
“I’m still trying to figure out what kind that I want to become.”
Samson’s watching father offers encouragement.
“Now don’t be scared. Shaving is about being confident. You are doing fine.”
“I’m at the point in my manhood where I’m actually happy,” says Samson.
“It’s not just myself transitioning, it’s everybody around me transitioning.”
The ad is part of Gillette’s new #MyBestSelf campaign. It concludes with the tagline:
“Whenever, wherever, however it happens — your first shave is special.”
Samson Bonkeabantu Brown
Samson posted on Facebook about the emotion he felt filming the ad.
“This moment overwhelmed me during filming and again today seeing the ad.
“I’m keenly aware of how blessed I am to exist in this world, supported by my family in ways that all too often many of my trans brother, sisters, and siblings who exist outside the binary are not always as fortunate.”
“Thank you so much Gillette, for allowing me to share such an important moment in a man’s life with my father.
“I look forward to the great things you’re going to continue doing to encourage us all to be our best selves.”
“Be good to yourselves. Love yourselves. And know that when you greet the world with love, it can and will love you back, often in the places you least expect.”
Gillette responded to Samson’s Facebook post soon after.
“Thank you for sharing your story, Samson!
“We’re honoured to showcase this special moment between you and your father and are proud to have you as a partner.
“Thank you for your courage and confidence in sharing your journey to becoming your best self!”
The ad will raise the ire of conservatives annoyed at Gillette’s acceptance of the young trans man.
Gillette previously experienced opposition to an earlier ad focussing on toxic masculinity. That ad inspired the hashtag #BoycottGillette. Conservatives proclaimed they’ll never spend money with Gillette again.
Well, there’s always new customers.
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