Dare to Bare: Forget the ‘vanity’ argument, it works

Dare to Bare (or #nomakeupselfies if you’d prefer) has been doing the rounds on social media for what seems like forever. Six months on Twitter is essentially 10 years in social media time and during this bare-faced reign we’ve pretty much seen every argument imaginable.

From immature spats regarding bare-faced claims “you’re totally wearing eye make-up and where is your donation??” to the most humble and lovely, the campaign has annoyed and touched hearts in equal measure.

Since the selfies infiltrated the web, so many articles have arisen claiming ‘people are missing the point’; but it’s that distinction between donating and doing nowt (except posing) that’s behind the beauty of this campaign.

Get the point (i.e. post, donate yourself and hope your friends will follow suit) or fail to do so and almost certainly be prompted to text BEAT to 70099 by your followers.

(That’s in order to donate £3 to Cancer Research UK. Hint, hint)

When people have failed to ‘get the point’, the amount that’s been done for breast cancer awareness in response is really quite incredible. From counteracting selfies with additional selfies complete with Marie Curie Daffodil pins to posting breast cancer awareness graphics, the campaign has put multiple cancer charities in the spotlight.


Twitter feed

From raising awareness for all types of cancer, to underlying feminist debates and critiques, any search will bring up a range of view-points.

If you’re now wondering what charity and what form of cancer the selfies are designed to target, then it seems to be very much an umbrella campaign. The original ‘Dare to Bare’ campaign began when cosmetics company Escentual started the campaign to raise money for breast cancer awareness month (October 2013). Escentual donated £1 for the first 1,000 women to tweet their Dare to Bare selfie to @BCCare.

The campaign quickly received some critique that is was essentially a vanity project and the public took it from there, helping to showcase a variety of cancer charities and essentially letting the campaign take on its own significance for every individual.

The fact is £8 million has been raised and many women are now increasingly aware of breast cancer symptoms, signs and quick ways to donate.

No one’s missing the point, because people won’t let them.

Say what you will about the #nomakeupselfies but I think this bittersweet campaign has worked on every level. I’ve just donated too – because a snarky Twitter comment about the futility of this ‘vanity campaign’ reminded me.

  • Written by on 4th April 2014 at 14:44
  • “Fluid Creativity is an award-winning, multi-service digital agency based in Manchester.”
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