Bad Acne

In todays western society, medicine has the potential to cure just about anything. Or at least, many people believe this way. Every day that passes, more and more people rely on biomedicine to cure the smallest ‘illnesses’. In fact, manufacturers of these drugs that can ‘do miracles’ often scam people to believe that their product actually works. In some cases, some of these drugs may only work due to the placebo effect. Karim stated in her article ” [we should] question the ethics of allowing celebrities to offer health advice to viewers, especially when they do not know or understand the risks associated with the products they endorse.” Drug companies try and use popular celebrities and sports athletes to promote a particular product, when in reality they may have no idea what the drug actually does, or any side effects that may happen after taking the drug. They simply stand there to make the drug look good.

The condition that I chose is bad acne and the link is provided above. This commercial wants you to believe that acne is embarrassing and ugly and that this product will make everything go away. They use teenagers or young girls to target the same age group considering this is the age group where acne appears the most. However, as far as any medical information is concerned, no information is provided including what ingredients are even in the product to make it work. A viewer should be skeptic of a product whose commercial gives no facts about how the product even works. I also find it interesting that the actors in the commercial seem super happy and are so glad that they have used the product. In reality, the viewer has no clue whether or not these actors even have suffered through bad acne and if photoshop editing was done to their faces to make it look extra clear and bright.

Karim, Tazim. “The Commodification of Celebrity Health”. Anthropologies: A Collaborative Online Project. Posted on March 15, 2013. Viewed on July 29, 2014.

This Post Has 1 Comment

  1. Morgan Barnett says:

    Although I wouldn’t go as far to call acne an illness, I do understand that society looks upon those with acne as less beautiful and thus, less influential. Embedded in our culture is a deep-seeded materialistic and perfectionist way of thought, and this way of thinking guides our everyday judgments. In today’s western society, each individual wants to be a threat, she wants to have it all—intelligence, athleticism, a good body, beautiful hair, a pretty face—the latter is what the ad targets. Furthermore, historically acne has not been as widespread and bad as it is today, and many researches trace the effects from the processed foods that we consume to skin conditions like acne. From an economic standpoint, companies that want to make money target teens, and embed the idea into their heads that acne is unnatural and not beautiful, and by doing so they increase their consumer-base and profit.
    Interestingly, many girls in the commercial mention having one single zit or pimple—to call this acne would be a stretch. Conrad states that “medicalized categories, once established, can expand to become broader and more inclusive” (1). Medicalization has created a wider acceptance for the term acne to include one pimple or zit and not an entire breakout. This of course is good for the companies because instead of only targeting the part of the population that experiences breakouts, they can target anyone who has ever gotten a pimple in their life, the majority of the population.
    (1) Conrad, Peter; Potter, Deborah. “From hyperactive children to ADHD adults: Observations on the expansion of medical categories.” Social Problems. 4:4 Nov. 2000 pp. 559-582

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