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Braun faces boycott over ‘shockingly immoral’ transgender ad

By CM Chaney · September 22, 2023

In brief…

  • Braun faces backlash and the possibility of a boycott for featuring a transgender male with mastectomy scars in an ad.
  • Critics argue that the ad promotes sex-change operations, drawing comparisons to other companies that have faced similar controversies.
  • The UK is investigating the ad for potentially violating advertising guidelines.
  • Braun's parent company, Procter & Gamble, defends the ad, saying that it is just one of many images on its website, and that the ad is two years old.
Razor company Braun is facing blowback over a controversial ad featuring a transgender male with mastectomy scars.  MyName (dontworry)/Wikimedia

Razor company Braun is facing intense criticism and calls for a boycott over a resurfaced advertisement that features a transgender man with visible mastectomy scars.

The ad for Braun’s Series X Hybrid Trimmers shows a shirtless trans man with scar lines under his breasts, apparently using the razor to shave his face. While the product is marketed for shaving beard, body, and head hair, conservative activists and psychologists have slammed the company for its ad.

Influencer Ian Miles Cheong suggested Braun has “gone the way of Gillette and Bud Light,” facing backlash for using transgender models.

“Braun is looking hard for its Budweiser moment,” Psychologist Dr. Jordan Peterson said.

In the UK, the ad has been called “shockingly immoral” and is being investigated for violating Advertising Standards Authority guidelines, according to Pink News.

“Braun executives must have been living under a rock if they think this campaign represents inclusivity,” Maya Forstater, executive director of Sex Matters, said. “The reality is that Braun has now written itself into history as promoting social contagion and what will become one of the most notorious medical scandals.”

“Once again, we find a private corporation willing to glorify irreversible surgery being performed on the healthy breasts of women, in pure pursuit of profit,” James Esses of Thoughtful Therapists said.

Despite the hostile reception towards the advertisement, many have expressed their endorsement of it.

Chay Brown, operations director at TransActual, a pro-trans organization, told PinkNews that he could not comprehend why anyone would take offense.

“It’s a man advertising a shaving product. Shirtless men doing this in nothing new,” Brown said. “We applaud Braun for their inclusive casting. By [featuring] a trans man in their advertising, they’re reflecting the fact that some trans men and non-binary people (and trans women) use their products.”

A Braun spokesperson defended the ad, saying the image “reflect[s] the consumers we serve,” that it is two years old, and is part of their strategy to “refresh and repurpose” materials across platforms.