When Did #runlikeagirl Become An Insult? (Video)

Photo: Always

Photo: Always

News sites, blogs, and online publications often thrown around the words “best video ever” when they come across a video or advertisement that has gone viral, but in the real world of “best things ever” a new tampon ad from Always may have just knocked it out of the park.

In a new YouTube video titled “Always #likeagirl” the tampon company held a casting call where they asked actors both younger and older to perform simple tasks “like a girl.”  What transpired during the course of the filming exposed some extremely painful truths about the negative attachment women and men have to doing something “like a girl.”

When older actors both male and female were asked to throw, run, and fight like a girl, their initial instinct was to perform the actions with limp wrists, without coordination, and flail their arms and legs around without confidence or strength.  However, when the same requests were made of girls 10-years-old and younger, the results were both stunning and inspiring.

The younger girls showed strength, confidence, and poise when running, fighting, and hitting “like a girl” and when asked whether the phrase itself was negative or positive, most of them admitted they had never really given it any thought.  To the younger girls, “like a girl” simply meant, “like me.”

When the director of the video asked the actors to reflect on what they had performed and asked them to think about how negative the phrase “like a girl” has been become for young girls going through puberty, their revelations were nearly transformative.

“I think it definitely drops their self-confidence and really puts them down” said one actor in the video, “because during that time they’re already trying to figure themselves out, and when somebody says “hit like a girl” it’s like, well what does that mean ’cause they think they’re a strong person.  It’s kind of like telling them that they’re weak and not as good as them.”

The message of this commercial was extremely important and personal to Lauren Greenfield the filmmaker who directed it, and was quoted on the YouTube page for the video saying “In my work as a documentarian, I have witnessed the confidence crisis among girls and the negative impact of stereotypes first-hand.  When the words ‘like a girl’ are used to mean something bad, it is profoundly disempowering. I am proud to partner with Always to shed light on how this simple phrase can have a significant and long-lasting impact on girls and women. I am excited to be a part of the movement to redefine ‘like a girl’ into a positive affirmation.”

Watch the video below to see for yourself why #likeagirl is something no girl should ever be ashamed of, and for more information on the #likeagirl campaign you can visit the Always site.


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