The new Roxy campaign dropped over the weekend. With the Make Waves, Move Mountains mantra, are the brand getting back to their roots or are they jumping on the ‘female empowerment’ band wagon?
After last year’s famous “F$*k you Billabong letter“, it was refreshing to think that a surf-wear brand had recognised that surfing women may actually want to be celebrated for being just that – surfing women. I jumped on their website to see what ‘Make Waves: Move Mountains” was all about.
Sadly, not a lot. In the lead banner was the token black and white (a nod to #timesup?) head shot of Roxy team riders next to the new tagline. In the same banner, there was also this:
I wasn’t feeling empowered, I was feeling confused. What is wrong with all these Roxy Girls (we’re all girls to Roxy)? Do they have a headache? Neck pain? Not to overthink it, I moved on and clicked to ‘join the movement’.
I got even more confused.
“It started day one. The day Lisa ripped in those boardshorts, the day Sarah dropped into the superpipe and the day Kelia log-dropped into Teahupo’o.” Reads the blurb… wait? All this happened IN ONE DAY?!
“We’ve always been real“. Real what? Are the surfers for other companies cyborgs, aliens? Have I missed something here?
“More than ever, positive leaders are being cast. Someone, and something to point the way. To set the example.” Yes, and what a stellar example Roxy set for surfing women with that god-awful ad for the 2013 Roxy Pro France. Aren’t we lucky they’ve moved on to empowerment!
“To rep real, to push new, and to be next, now.” I don’t even know what this means. By now my brain was hurting. Thankfully that was it.
With the hashtag #roxygirls, I was then invited to “join our trip. To put some heart into it. And to show others that they can do the same.” Do the same what? This is not even a sentence!
I suddenly realised why the women (sorry, girls) on the front banner were holding their heads. Perhaps they’re as confused as me about how they’re being empowered here…
*In the interest of fairness, there is a shot of a woman (girl) surfing on the front page of the Roxy Australia website. One shot. Of a woman surfing. For a surf-wear label. #Stillnotempowered.