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  • Writer's pictureCatherine Laz


Updated: Oct 22, 2020

A young girl heavily tattooed on her face, children comparing their parents’ unsafe habits in a frenzied competition. These scenarios are radio campaigns running in the UK and France respectively. The first one was devised by Ogilvy for sun protection lotion Soltan and the second one for a French insurers association.

Tattoos and sun

The Boots Soltan radio spot "Sun damage for life" picked up a winning Aerial award for its hard-hitting and pretty frightening message:

Tattooist Hey, good to see you again. What tattoo are you getting today? [Reply comes from an eight-year-old girl.]

Girl: "Majorca 2018", please. Really big across my back.

Tattooist: Nice. How many is that now?

Girl: I’ve got one on my chest from the beach. One on my arm from the park.

MVO: Some leading sun creams don’t offer five-star UVA protection, exposing your child to sun damage that’s as permanent as a tattoo. Be certain with Soltan, exclusively at Boots. (edited for length)

By using a little girl and subjecting her to the kind of irresponsible behaviour some adults are guilty of, the horrifying consequences are all too clear. Parents who let their children without proper sun protection are as bad as these idiots who get tattooed on holidays when they’ve had too much to drink. It doesn’t bear thinking.

It’s also a reflection on children’s common sense which is often lacking in some adults. Children are precious but they’re also far more level-headed than some parents. By shaming those who are supposed to look after them properly, this scenario reminds us that adults are not always the most responsible in families.

My dad has a bigger one than yours

The French campaign Attitude Prévention works on exactly the same principals. The radio spots depict different situations where 3 children compare their parents’ poor behaviour at the wheel or at a barbecue. Whilst depicting their parents’ actions, the anecdotes grow scarier in a kind of competitive way as the children seem proud of their parents’ unsafe antics.

« Et si nous transmettions la bonne attitude ? »

“And why don’t we convey the right attitude?”

Kid 1: In my dad’s new car, there’s a super super big screen.

Kid 2: Well, in my mum’s car too and she even receives messages on it.

Kid 3: My dad he write messages directly whilst driving.

“And why don’t we convey the right attitude

At the wheel no texting, no telephone”

Prevention attitude

The insurers act together

Grow up!

So what’s happening to our society when children on both sides of the Channel show parents that their conduct is frankly irresponsible and rather... childish? The fact that for the first time in history, we find parents who literally don’t want to grow up, get tattooed on a whim and are so obsessed with their gadgets, driving becomes hazardous. In Germany, they’ve been warned that a growing number of children are drowning because they’ve been too busy looking at their phones instead of looking after their children in the water.

Here children are reminding parents to do their job properly, not to get distracted or behaving stupidly and starting to behave like role models for their kids. It is a strange coincidence that campaigns run simultaneously in two countries where children take centre stage to drive the message home: parents you’ve been warned!

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