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Not working with us: 6 sexist Valentine adverts to prove we’re still in trouble

We’re just two weeks away from what is, according to marketing propaganda, the most romantic day of the year. Best not to dwell on whether you agree or not.

Valentine’s Day means big money for the brands involved, but as attitudes and perceptions alter many companies are actually showing themselves up to be completely out of touch with 21st Century society. Don’t believe things are that bad? Here are 6 of the most sexist examples out there, all of which prove we’re still in trouble.


“Give, and you shall receive,” supermodel Adriana Lima explains while sorting her out corset. How the hell a commercial for the world’s leading dial-a-florist wound up reinforcing the dangerous notion that giving a woman a gift means she owes you sex is beyond us.


You might expect a feminine sanitary product brand to have its act together, but you’d be wrong. Hence this image of a guy helplessly left without that which guys are always after thanks to mother nature’s meddling ways. Not cool for girls, or boys.

Nakshatara Diamond Jewellery

A brand owned by the Gitanjali group only went and did another Teleflora. Women want shiny, expensive things, and if you cross their palms with silver— or in this case diamonds— you will be rewarded in the only way they know how.

Pizza Hut

There’s no shortage of condescension towards men when it comes to gifts, and frankly it has to stop. Few brands have ever gone as far as Pizza Hut in the US, though, when it put together a $10,010 ‘tie the knot’ set, including ring, limo ride, fireworks, videographer and a $10 dinner box. Because, you know, guys can’t choose genuinely thoughtful presents.

Natan Jewellery

Don’t worry, we’ll leave the whole ‘gifts should not mean sex’ point after this, but Natan Jewellery is arguably the worst of the lot as it implies she needs to see the actual value of the present before, well, you know by now.


Given the original Wonderbra position centred on the ‘fact’ that a woman feels like more of a woman if she conforms to the male fantasy in the chest department this example of the brand at its worst shouldn’t shock. But it does.


More on Valentine’s Day from our blog archives


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