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Although advertisements nowadays can definitely be considered sexist due to their blatant sexualization of women, they are nothing like advertisements of the past. For today’s gallery, I’ve decided to display some of the most surprising ads I could find; ads that depict women as weak and living solely to serve men.

Looking at these definitely made me appreciate being a woman in today’s society a little more. Check out these 10 surprising vintage ads and let me know what you think!

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  1. What about more recently > Secret Deodorant “‘Strong enough for a man…but made for a Woman”

  2. I’d be happy if someone bought me a Hoover for Xmas. My vacuum is crap! lol

  3. You have to appreciate the design of some of the adverts though. I love the look of the Hoover ad, especially her dress.

  4. Great article! I’m amazed, so horrible ads!

  5. Is the guy in the midol ad Bill Paxton?

  6. My fave: thoughtless woman in the Hoover ad. An empty thought bubble. Way to be subtle. I too thought the title read ” sexiest ” ads.

  7. I am appalled by the one for Pep vitamins!

  8. Oh, this is so wrong that is awesome! I actually cried from laughter with the beer one.

  9. I’ve seen most of these before, so “surprising” isn’t the word I’d use…except for the Midol ad. That’s marketed for women, so why patronize them like that? Also, men are often treated as idiots in ads today, so neither gender is being treated fairly by advertising execs.

    • I completely agree! it’s like we’ve stopped treating women like objects (thank god!), but now we depict men as idiots… ad execs really need to come up with better material…
      lol and here I thought Mad Men was exaggerating…

  10. I read the title as ‘sexiest ads’ so was confused at what was shown, but now I understand. I think that number 10 is the best one, its so patronising.

  11. the ones these days with over sexualisation of women are WAY worse than pointing out the fact that women clean.

  12. Great insight… I am so thankful to be able to stand up for myself in today’s society. I just made a collage of vintage images and phrases from LIFE magazine that was intended to depict this same sort of thing. All images of women helping men and/or children.,

    Bravo!

  13. GEEZ!! That mess is crazy!