Elave has nothing to hide. Irish company Ovelle Pharmaceuticals is promoting skin products in a risque viral campaign featuring nude actors. A blonde woman, without clothes, tells the viewer about the safe quality of Elave cosmetics products, developed with the most reactive skin conditions in mind; eczema, dermatitis and psoriasis. Male and female lab technicians wander around in the background totally naked, apparently without any sense of self-consciousness.
The video, featuring nude women and men and not safe for work, is online at www.nothing-to-hide.co.uk (now discontinued in 2010). The Elave web site states, “We stand behind our skin care products, so much so that we are prepared to go naked to prove it.” Viewers are asked to indicate that they are 18 or over. No doubt versions used in television broadcasting will be censored in some way – which would make it difficult to say ‘nothing to hide’.
Responses to the Elave campaign are just starting to filter on to the internet. Some say that this is gratuitous nudity, an unnecessary attempt to get the attention of online viewers. Others tip their hats to the courage and nerve of the company to take the risk. There is certainly a link between the sensitive skin angle and the exposure of breasts and genitals – the body parts most sensitive. The actors in the ad do not exhibit any ‘sexual behaviour’ towards one another, though it could be argued that the woman with the test tube is playing with innuendo.
Joanna Gardener, of Ovelle Pharmaceuticals, appears in the advertisement, behind a laptop.
“As a mother of three children, I didn’t think I was the right choice for the front of the advert so we went for someone a bit easier on the eye,” Ms Gardener told The Daily Mail on Saturday.
Ovelle has seen a 500 per cent rise in sales, both online and in the High Street, since the campaign was launched on May 5.
The Elave Nothing To Hide campaign was developed by Saatchi & Saatchi New Zealand. Filming (in New Zealand) was directed by Brendan Donovan via Prodigy Films, New Zealand, with director of photography Duncan Cole. Post production was done at Images Post, Sydney. Film crew also went nude to put the cast at ease.