Issue: skin-care advice
Squeaky-clean Persil's new web site tells users that Napoleon would send word to Josephine telling her not to wash for a few days before they met. Both the French dictator and detergent manufacturer Persil advocate a heady female scent through the cultivation of hirsute armpits. These and other bizarre revelations can be found at loveyourskin.com, a web site that went live on 1 July, to complement Persil's Non-Bio brand.
Persil Non-Bio detergent avoids, where it can, the use of chemicals potentially harmful to skin. The site aims to extend the concept of the brand's skin-care qualities into an on-line magazine aimed at women in their 20s and 30s. It seeks to extend Persil's image from that of young mothers and families to include single women.
The web site is published by the season and soothing pastel tones are used liberally - presumably communicating the natural, caring aspects of the Non-Bio brand.
The home page divides into categories, displayed under headings of each of the six human senses - a theme consistent with the 'natural' emphasis of the brand . They are 'feel', 'look', 'taste', 'hear', 'smell' and 'sixth'.
The 'feel' section of the site offers advice on helping skin to feel good. For example, if you live in a heavily polluted area then it advises you to always wear moisturiser. Other helpful hints cover areas such as thighs, breasts and bottoms; and there is also an area that presents a guide to skin condition at different ages - revealing the optimal way to treat skin that is oily, flaky, bumpy, etc.
The 'look' section advises on how to protect skin from harmful UV rays.
'Taste' informs the user 'beautiful women are what they eat' and discusses food and drink that can be of benefit - whether ingested or applied externally. Advice on vitamins, an interview with chef Brian Baker and a three-day menu are also given.
'Hear' advises as to what your skin is telling you when freckles seem to get larger. 'Smell' informs about how to maximise the natural fragrance of skin, and informs women that skin can send out secret (sometimes sexual) aromatic messages.
The final section, 'sixth', is about working on your skin to benefit your mind. Massage oils, pheromones and alternative medicine feature.
A banner runs across the foot of the page, entitled 'passing thoughts'.
At the time of going to press, PR Week was told that baths are worse for our skin than taking a shower, and that in the 18th century baths were only taken by madmen in asylums. There is also a link to Persil's web site.
Loveyourskin.com is very easy to navigate. If new seasonal issues are posted regularly, it should prove a valuable asset to its target audience.
Persil have created a web site that successfully boosts Non-Bio as a 'caring', but not humourless, brand.