In honor of National Women's History Month, Brawny Paper Towels aims to wipe away gender limitations by putting a feminist twist — and a feminine face — on its packaging.
Meet the Brawny woman. She's just as strong as the Brawny man, because, as the company's month-long campaign advocates, #StrengthHasNoGender.
Not only has the paper towel brand replaced its recognizable Brawny man with a fierce female equivalent, but proceeds from every roll (available only at Wal-Mart) fund a $75,000 donation to Girls Inc.'s Operation SMART.
The program "develops girls' enthusiasm for and skills in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM)." By providing hands-on activities and interaction with STEM professionals, Operation SMART encourages girls to explore, ask questions, think critically, solve problems, and, perhaps most importantly, picture themselves succeeding in typically male-dominated career fields.
In addition, Brawny has also created a "Breaking Barriers" YouTube video series, highlighting women who have made revolutionary contributions to various STEM fields.
Though much work still remains in the crusade for women's equal rights, many can agree that representation is a necessary and important step on that march. By showing images of strong women on something so ubiquitous as paper towels, we're teaching everyone, especially children, that this is ordinary.
The best thing about strong women (and there are several to choose from) is that they are not a novel entity. They are co-workers, commuters, neighbors, daughters, sisters, parents, people — and they are everywhere, including, now, a paper towel label.
"Overall, what we hope to accomplish with this campaign is to promote conversation about what it means to be strong and resilient, and inspire women and girls everywhere to chase their dreams no matter what obstacles they may face," Laura Knebusch, Vice President Marketing Activation at Georgia-Pacific, told RealSimple.com.
That conversation has certainly started. On Twitter, several women, from artists to airwomen, have applauded the brand's package change, while other tweeters have urged the company to offer packages featuring the Brawny woman alongside those of the Brawny man permanently.
Whether people agree or disagree with the brand's initiative, they're talking about it. They're engaging, they're sharing, they're learning why these initiatives, no matter how big or small, matter.