Why Was This Calvin Klein Billboard So Offensive?

Calvin Klein’s latest billboard campaign has not gone down well.

We’ve all seen the Kendall Jenner and Justin Bieber campaign shots, but in the last week, a new series of famous faces have stepped up to front the #MyCalvins campaign.

But it’s the image of actress Klara Kristin next to one of Fetty Wap that’s got women up in arms. And you’re about to see why…

In Klara’s shot, she’s seen slouched on a sofa in a short dress with the words: “I seduce in #mycalvins” stamped across the image.

In contrast, Fetty Wapp’s headshot is accompanied by the words “I make money in #mycalvins.” Hmm.

It’s easy to see the problem with the two campaigns, which were unfortunately placed side by side on a huge billboard in New York – why is hard-working actress Klara’s quote all about how she looks, whereas Fetty’s the one who’s seen as having a successful career?

Read: This Woman Was Told To Cover Up Her Cleavage On TV…



Heidi Zak, of ThirdLove, agreed, and decided to make a YouTube video about the ‘sexist’ billboard, asking people in the street what they thought.

‘It enforced really unfortunate stereotypes’, one woman said. ‘It’s a double standard and not one we should put out there like this’, a male passerby added.

Zak then started a Change.org petition to get it taken down.

‘The billboard propagates an archaic and offensive gender stereotype that women are nothing more than sexual objects, while men are the breadwinners,’ Heidi says.

‘Calvin Klein has a vast assortment of content for this campaign, so we find it appalling that the company chose to put these two images side by side in one of the most highly visible intersections in the country.’

And guess what? It worked. The SoHo billboard has now been taken down. Although the brand states that its removal had nothing to do with Heidi. 

‘This billboard was taken down overnight as part of the planned rotation of our spring 2016 advertising campaign’, the brand told Refinery29. ‘We take all of our consumers’ concerns seriously and as a global brand, we promote gender equality and the breakdown of gender stereotypes across the world.’

What do you think?