Thanks so much to Rich, over at Moksi , who listened to us talking about the barriers that we face with our little brand, and who came up with these ideas for us to use moving forward.
We have always been a bit baffled by the massive difference in attitude towards what can be shown on women, and what can be shown on men. We expected a bit of noise when we launched, some haters, some who would laugh and a few eyebrows raised, but we had absolutely no idea that the barriers to being seen would be so high, and so deeply entrenched.
Rich helped us to distill what we have been thinking and talking about with the idea of #UnmuteMoot - why is it that we are tolerant of lingerie, even very sexualised styling of lingerie, when it puts the female body on display but we will not tolerate such styling on a masc form - that is seen as perverted, wrong, deviant, totally unacceptable for a shopping centre display - but a woman? that's fair game.
We were staggered by the content that we were not allowed to use for advertising purposes on Meta, while women's lingerie brands could, and do, show highly charged imagery. It seems that certain human bodies are immediately recognised as 'against community standards'.
We really do understand the need for there to be guidelines and safety structures on the internet and we are grateful for them, but when there is such clear differences between how we are allowed to perceive different bodies in underwear ads it is frustrating to say the least.
And it's sad. Sad because it is clear that while a big part of this is detrimental for our business and for male bodies to know that we are seen as 'dangerous', it's even more depressing to realise that the bigger underlying message here is that women's bodies are seen as objects to be viewed sexually by all of society, at all times, including being blindfolded and handcuffed in shop window displays on the High Street. Where are the community guidelines then?!
So, if you're truly into equality of opportunity, it means making the ground level for all lingerie wearers, regardless of the shape of their genitals. It means recognising your feelings when you are confronted with lingerie imagery of any gender and being mindful that there should be equity.