L’Oréal Paris’ Famous Tagline Is Turning 50 —Here’s a Look Back at Its Influence

Today is International Women’s Day, and while there are countless women to celebrate, there are also numerous brands who have made an effort to uplift women, and L’Oréal Paris is among the bunch. This year, the brand is celebrating their fiftieth anniversary of their tagline “Because You’re Worth It,” and there’s no better time to break down the message behind these four simple words than this week.

According to the brand, the tagline was first created in 1971 by a 23-year-old copywriter, Ilon Specht, around the same time that the Women’s Liberation movement was taking place in Manhattan. “This was the first-ever advertising message to highlight self-confidence,” and it changed the way women we’re looked at in times where they were often disregarded.

Courtesy of L’Oréal

“In advertising, men wanted images such as a woman sitting by a window, with the wind blowing through the curtains,” Specht tells L’Oréal Paris. “The woman was a complete object: I don’t think she even spoke. I wanted to portray a real woman who was more assertive and more contemporary. I wanted the ad to benefit her,” Specht recalls, as she explains that this ad featured a woman’s voice, a major switch-up in the typical male-dominated advertising industry.

“For half a century, we have been relentless in our dedication to empowering women, accompanying them on their journey, by their side,” says Delphine Viguier-Hovasse, global brand president, L’Oréal Paris. “We empower every woman through our beauty products, backed by the latest scientific advances in formula development, and with services to help her feel good about herself…Our mission will only be accomplished when we no longer need to remind women of their worth.”

50 years later, the tagline has been not only been translated into 40 different languages, but voiced by the most popular A-listers in the industry, from Eva Longoria to Jane Fonda. As part of its ongoing commitment to empower women, L’Oréal Paris has renewed its partnership with Stand Up Against Street Harassment, which illustrates the severity of street harassment and motivates women to stand up for themselves in times of need.

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