Ads showing women unable to resist the lure of chocolate, slaving in the kitchen and going giggly at the sight of a man will be no more if consumer goods giant Unilever has its way.
The firm, behind more than 400 brands from Ben & Jerry’s ice-cream to Dove soap, has pledged to remove sexist stereotypes from its own ads and called on rivals to follow suit.
Some 40% of women did not identify with their portrayal in ads, it said.
The firm spends £6bn a year on adverts ($8.8-Billion on advertising).
The figure makes it the second-biggest advertiser globally and chief marketing officer Keith Weed told the BBC this gave it a responsibility to push the change “on a broader society level”.
He said the campaign, dubbed Unstereotype, was the culmination of two years of research.
This uncovered some “extraordinary things”, including that women were largely portrayed in a secondary or service role, with just 3% of ads featuring women in managerial or professional roles.
Other findings revealed almost all women (90%) felt they were presented as sex symbols and almost a third (30%) said adverts showed women as perceived by a man.