Armpit of America Ad Nixed After NJ Objects to Dove Deodorant Billboard

Wednesday, 05 Mar 2014 10:36 AM

By Alexandra Ward

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An ad referring to New Jersey as the "Armpit of America" has been ditched by Dove soap after New Jersey residents made a stink over the "offensive" and "insulting" nature of the billboard.

Unilever's Dove recently unveiled the ad mockup for its new line of Advanced Care deodorant. According to ABC News, the armpit billboard was slated to go on display in the Garden State in July, but it didn’t exactly go over as expected.

"Dear New Jersey," the sign reads, "when people call you 'The Armpit of America,' take it as a compliment. Sincerely, Dove."



Outraged New Jersey residents immediately took to Facebook and Twitter to share their feelings about the armpit billboard.

"New Jersey is the Garden State not the armpit state," one Facebook user posted on Dove's page. "Will think twice before buying your product now."

"Your ad campaign was ignorant and offensive," another person commented.

"For a company that tries to be so politically correct with its 'Beauty Is' campaign, I think you really screwed the pooch on your anti-New Jersey billboard," someone else wrote.

This week, Dove apologized and said it would not go ahead with the armpit campaign.

"Thank you for your comments. With our 'Dear New Jersey' advertisement, Dove deodorant never intended to upset the residents of the state," Unilever said in a statement. "As a result of your feedback, Dove deodorant will not be moving forward with publishing or displaying this ad."

Matthew McCarthy, senior marketing director of antiperspirants and deodorants at Unilever, announced that the company will instead devote the billboard space to a New Jersey charity.

"We did not wish to cause any misunderstanding and apologize for any offense," he said in a statement. "Our intent with the 'Dear New Jersey' billboard, which was one of many ads for our campaign, was to call attention to the fact that armpits can and should be considered beautiful and ask women everywhere to accept this as something that is okay."

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