Well this is…unfortunate.

Tell me, dear reader. What do you think of when you see this:

 

 

I would suggest that after you struggle to keep down the last thing you ate, you think about foreskins. You know. The penis kind. I would also suggest that you think about an unpleasant male genitalia smell and the uncomfortable feeling of having an itchy anus.

You might also be wondering where that guy’s balls have gone but that’s besides the point.

I saw this on my way to work. I was taken aback to say the least. There’s something about the combination of seeing ‘4SKINS’, the question above the undie line that says ‘HAVE YA GOT ONE?’ and then the words ‘ODOUR CONTROL UNDERWEAR’, that is especially nauseating. Particularly as those words appear to be floating out of the underwear model’s anus like an oddly articulate fart.

Naturally, I assumed that this brand was drawing a connection between having a foreskin and an off-putting smell in your under carriage. So now the idea in my mind is of someone whose abominably bad hygeine practices has caused their foreskin to become some festering cess pool of unsavoury scents. Both a gross and niche market.

What didn’t come to mind was the promotion of racial harmony and diversity. But according to the 4skins website, that’s what this is all about.

“4SKINS as the name suggest [sic] is a cheeky underwear brand with a strong emphasis on comfort and alluring designs. The mission statement of 4SKINS is that it is a brand that unites all the different skin colours of mankind – be it white, black, yellow or brown. Here at 4SKINS we were inspired by both the diversity and the unification of cultures that we enjoy in our daily lives.”

Oh. Yeah…I dunno. Firstly, I’m still thinking about foreskins. Mainly because you keep saying it. Secondly, the 4 different skin colours of humanity seems unusual to me- particularly as your choice of models would suggest that white = anglo-saxon people, black = african people, yellow = asian people and brown = mediterranean people. I feel offensive just typing that out because it’s all so wrong.

 

(See 4:00)

 

Ignoring that weirdness, the intention is all very lovely. I’m not sure how odour control underwear is supposed to help promote inter-racial unity between the browns, yellows, blacks and whites…ugh. Ok. Does anyone else see the problem here? I know they’re referring to skin colour (but still- right?) and not ‘groups’ of people…but they kind of are because of how they represent it through their models.

 

Left to right: white, brown, yellow, black. Sigh. I feel racist and aroused. So confusing.

 

The strangeness of it has made me feel all weird and squiggly (and it’s not the first time foreskins have made me feel that way- HEYOOOOO!)

So I guess now I have a choice to make. I can either think of these undies as the catchers of foreskin smell, or I can think of them as well-intentioned but misguided maybe a little bit kind of racist underwear maybe sort of I’m not really sure.

Also, what about people without foreskins? Are they excluded from the love-in? Are you anti-Semitic and anti-Muslim, 4skins??? IS THAT WHAT THIS IS?

Probably not. But I like to throw around outrageous accusations.

Just in case 4skins do want to change their marketing strategy to make it less weirdly racist but at about the same level of gross, I have a solution for them.

 

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