Self-confidence is sexy. It must be because Beyonce says it is. So does Sofia Vergara and even Winnie from the Wonder Years. Granted, when a trio of fairly combustible hotties start popping off about the virtues of self-confidence versus looks, such observations might come off a tad precious: “Of course they’d say that, they’re gorgeous....”. Well, I look instead to Flashionista. When a website dedicated to menopausal (and yet still fashion-forward) women says confidence is sexy it sure as heck better be. Those hot flashes gotta have some positives too.
Self-confidence is sexy. It’s huge in every single thing we do. We live and die based on our self-confidence. Take the dumbest, dorkiest hat in the world. Or even the crappiest, rattle-trap car on the lot. Each has the ability to morph from a liability to an asset simply by virtue of the self-confidence displayed by the owner. And the opposite applies too. You can have the best but if you don’t believe in yourself no one else will either. Self-confidence rules.
Now, obviously advertising knows this. That’s why their business is suggesting quick fixes for those lacking in the confidence department. Depressed? Angry? Alone and unfulfilled? They have the right kitchen, the right coat and even the right can of semi-gloss to carry your second-guessing self to the Xanadu of domestic perfection. This should in turn bestow the confidence sought and finally make life worth living. It doesn’t, but you feel better while you try. In the end though, if you don’t have confidence to start with, you’re going to have a pretty hard time buying it.
So when Old Spice started up that ridiculous The Man Your Man Could Smell Like series of spots I never really warmed to them. Yes, confidence bottled as sailor scent was pretty funny and all but they just seemed stupid to me. The whole never-break-eye-contact thing while being stagey and over-the-top was a bit much. But they kept coming and hammered and hammered. The actor that starred in them, Isaiah Mustafa, even gained significant fame. Last summer saw Old Spice launch what eventually became the fastest growing online viral video campaign ever. They notched almost seven million views within 24 hours, climbing to nearly twenty-five million by 36 hours. And that campaign only ran for three days. It was huge.
They kept at it. All confidence. No backing down. More ads, more bits – insane confidence. I didn’t know what was happening. They eventually started to penetrate. I......liked them. Then, just recently, they introduced some Danger Zone guy who is even more cheesily confident than the smell-like-your-man guy. I couldn’t believe it. Now I loved it. What the heck happened? Confidence. They won me over with their confidence.
Personally, I blame Donald Trump. Look at the guy. He’s a cartoon, a self-promoting greaseball in a big suit. He’s been married three times, bankrupt even more and has a hair style that simply defies description. He has his name on meat, mattresses and even vitamins. If anyone ought to question his choices in life it’s this guy. But he doesn’t quit. He just keeps on re-asserting an absolutely unshakable confidence in himself. Eventually, that kind of belief just wins you over no matter how hard you fight. And believe me, I tried. Originally, I couldn’t stand Trump. Now I can’t get enough of the guy.
Realizing this, the idea of being confident for the sake of confidence began to appeal to me. Maybe that’s all we really need. Confidence is something like bravery. No one actually goes around being “brave.” The brave guy is the simply one who is scared just like everybody else but does what has to be done anyway. Same goes for confidence. Being self-confident is just deciding you’re going to trust that face in the mirror no matter what happens. And that’s not a bad thing, now is it?
You know, I think I’ve still got a half bottle of Old Spice kicking around from grade ten. They say scents can be very powerful triggers. Who knows what’ll happen if I bust out some Spice and jump-start the old confidence kitty. Mee-OW!