This laundry ad in India is turning heads for all the right reasons.
In February, Ariel, a popular detergent brand in India, released an ad for their #ShareTheLoad campaign, and now it’s going viral. The ad features a father writing a letter to his adult daughter after a visit to her home. In the video, the father watches as his daughter comes home from a day of work, only to immediately begin juggling a series of common household tasks like picking up toys, starting a load of laundry, and making dinner, all while her husband sits on the couch watching TV.
It’s a familiar scene for many women, and the father in the ad is done seeing it happen. In his letter, he apologizes to his daughter for teaching her that she was expected to handle the work of the home alone. He places blame on himself and other fathers who failed to set an example of assisting with housekeeping, and promises to work harder in the future by helping his own wife with daily household chores.
This ad is the latest part of Ariel’s #ShareTheLoad ad campaign. The campaign started in 2015 with one simple question: “Is laundry only a woman’s job?” Since the release of the campaign’s first ad, Ariel has worked to ensure that the answer to that question is a firm, resounding, “No,” provoking national discussion in India about traditional gender roles. They’ve even cooperated with several leading designers and merchandisers in India to change the wash labels on clothes to encourage more men to pick up their own laundry baskets.
A photo posted by M & F Laundry (@mandflaundry) on Apr 11, 2016 at 6:25pm PDT
This campaign has been a national success in India, inspiring over 1.5 million men to take the pledge to #ShareTheLoad. In days when the wage gap between men and women is still a hotly debated topic, Ariel’s ad campaign addresses real questions about gender equality and unpaid work, such as shopping or housekeeping. Women worldwide, including American women, take on the main burden of unpaid work compared to men. #ShareTheLoad aims to address this problem, not by attacking men, but instead by attacking the culture that encourages women to take on the lion’s share of housework, and prompts both men and women to question their preconceived notions about gender and the home. You can watch the full video below.