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NARS steps up on sex appeal with a series of phallic-shaped lipstick ads

Cosmetics brand NARS has rolled out a series of saucy ads on Instagram featuring phallic-shaped lipsticks. It is part of its #NARSAFTERHOURS, which promotes its latest “After Hours” lipstick range.

The ads show a short animation of a melted lipstick solidifying to form the NARS logo, resembling the male anatomy in the process. One of the posts, which said “when the nudes keep you up all night”, has drawn over 984,000 views in two days.

According to the captions, the “After Hours” range is inspired by “late night obsessions”. While there are 12 colours in the collection, it is unsure whether there are more of such ads to come. Marketing has reached out to its parent company, Shiseido for more information.

Meanwhile, netizens on social media has praised the company for being clever with the ad. Others pointed out that the lipstick is a good match for NARS’ other products which bear sexually-explicit names such as Orgasm and Climax. On the flip side, some users on Twitter called out the brand for being “not classy”, unfriendly for teenage girls, and not inclusive of the lesbian community.

According to Shiseido’s financial statement for the first half of 2019, continued solid performance of NARS, LAURA MERCIER and other prestige brands combined with strong growth for ELIXIR and SENKA resulted in 12.0% year-on-year growth in net sales in Asia Pacific. NARS also saw growth in China, America and EMEA regions.

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