Gillette has been applauded for its heartwarming new advert which is helping redefine masculinity by showing a young transgender man being taught to shave by his dad.
It features Toronto-based artist Samson Bonkeabantu Brown as his father leads him through the process of shaving his face for the first time, seen as a rite of passage for many men.
“Growing up, I was always trying to figure out what kind of man I wanted to become and I’m still trying to figure out what kind of man that I want to become,” says Brown in the video. “I always knew I was different. I didn’t know that there was a term for the type of person that I was.”
The ad concludes with Brown’s powerful statement alluding to the way that LGBTQ visibility is not just a personal journey but also changes the hearts and minds of others: “It’s not just myself transitioning,” he says, “everybody around me is transitioning.”
The moving advert was published on Gillette’s Facebook page but it’s unclear if it will be published or broadcast elsewhere.
Writing on Facebook, Brown commented: “Thank you so much Gillette for allowing me to share such an important moment in a man’s life with my father. I look forward to the great things you’re going to continue doing to encourage us all to be our best selves.”
Gillette responded: “Thank you for sharing your story, Samson! We’re honored to showcase this special moment between you and your father and are proud to have you as a partner. Thank you for your courage and confidence in sharing your journey to becoming your best self!”
Earlier this year, Gillette was embroiled in international controversy after it released an ad that called out the culture of toxic masculinity.
Watch First Shave, the story of Samson below.