In our modern society, advertising is an essential part of our everyday lives. Indeed, it’s carefully crafted to speak directly to our hearts and minds. It is a form of persuasive communication. The ultimate objective of advertising is to sell things persuasively and creatively.
The history of advertising is filled with misogynistic and offensive print advertisements from brands that promoted male chauvinism, sexism and creating an insecure feeling and a sense of insecurity among women. They reflect on our past. Early print advertisements were blatant, and some were so offensive that it was hard to believe they ever appeared. Advertisers understood that sex sells and controversy, so they did not go about sending out sexist messages. Companies pushed the limits as far as they could to sell their products and services. Modern ads objectify women, but it’s impossible that companies could get away with what they did a few decades ago. Several ads featured men groping their wives, treading on them, and blowing smoke into their faces in the past.
Several major brands have used sexist slogans, including Kellogg’s: “The harder a wife works, the cuter she looks.” Volkswagen’s advertising begins with, “Women are soft and gentle, but they hit things.” Some companies promoted pseudoscience that is now known as utter nonsense. Moms were told to add 7-Up to their babies’ milk. The marketing for Camel cigarettes stated that it was the “doctors favorite brand.”
Below are some sexiest and offensive ads that show how brands advertised their products in the past.