The Tour de France begins today, and for the first time ever it is actually starting in the UK. Unfortunately these thong-clad riders are not going to be taking on the London – Canterbury first leg of the race, which would certainly make it more interesting from my point of view.
They were, however, used as part of a bill board advertising campaign to tie in with the event a few years ago. The posters sparked controversy because there were serious concerns that they might distract drivers and cause accidents.
Sloggi advertisements have also come under criticism for being sexist. In France the billboards led to such outrage that even top politicians such as Segolene Royale spoke out against ‘le string’:
“Many headteachers have banned the accessory altogether, which is a very good thing. As far as boys are concerned, the string reduces young women to little more than their bottoms.”
Hmm…since when is wearing a thong sexist? It’s underwear. Granted it’s highly attention getting underwear but it’s still underwear that apparently many women like. It is true though, that some of Sloggi’s adverts seem to be more about the model’s bottoms than the underwear that they are supposedly promoting.
But it must be successful because other companies have copied their style:
Sloggi has also been accused of placing their ads in deliberately provocative locations, such as near schools and mosques, in order to reap the benefit of any subsequent media coverage.
They’ve even sent models to outdoor public locations such as motorway bridges, where they have stripped off and held up boards advertising their website. One such guerilla ad campaign took place in London close to Tower Bridge.
Luckily for us however, there was also a ‘guerilla’ photographer around on the day who made the most of his opportunity:
I think my favourite bottom is fifth from the right in the second picture. Can we have a close up of her please?
Now what’s wrong with that Madame Royale?