Gillette ad shows father teaching his transgender son how to shave

A new ad campaign from Procter & Gamble-owned razor brand Gillette features a father teaching his transgender son how to shave for the first time.

The video shows Samson Bonkeabantu Brown, a Toronto-based artist, opening up about his first experience shaving with his father since his transition.

“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,” Brown said.

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“I always knew I was different. I didn’t know there was a term for the type of person that I was,” Brown continued. “I went into my transition just wanting to be happy. I’m glad I’m at the point where I’m able to shave.”

In the bathroom with his father, Brown practices his strokes before using the razor.

“Now, don’t be scared,” his father encourages in the clip. “Shaving is about being confident.”

Brown said that his transition is not just about him, but those around him.

“Whenever, wherever, however it happens, your first shave is special,” the ad reads.

The video was viewed more than 860,000 times since it was released on Thursday.

In a Facebook post written after the video’s release, Brown wrote that he was overwhelmed by the positive response. 

“I’m keenly aware of how blessed I am to be able to exist in this world being supported by my family in ways that all too often many of my trans brothers, sisters, and siblings who exist outside the binary are not always as fortunate,” Brown wrote. “I am confident that this ad will encourage many of my trans siblings and fill them with the knowledge that our existence in this world can be filled with the love and support we deserve.”

This is not the first time that an ad from the razor brand made headlines. 

Gillette released a campaign in January to challenging the decades-old slogan, “The Best a Man Can Get,” to discuss toxic masculinity, harassment and men’s mental health.

“We believe in the best in men. To say the right thing, to act the right way,” a narrator says over clips, both scripted and real, of men defending others from bullying or stopping friends from harassing women.

“The boys watching today will be the men of tomorrow,” the narrator says.