Ren Love Clean Skin (or, would you like a bit of porn with your cleanser?)

Now, I’m a fan of Ren, their Rose Otto Bath Oil is one of my desert island products.  Last week they released their “first short film” (it is not an advert, allegedly) and here’s the edited version:

It’s safe for work, don’t worry.

But, this is the longer version (it’s less than two minutes long, but – and it’s a BIG but – do not watch this if you’re at work, I mean it, you will regret it and you’ll likely get fired to boot) Youtube will ask you if you’re over 18, and with very good reason:

Now, what I want to know, is any of this necessary?  This is basically soft porn, and what on earth it has to do with the products, I have no idea.  Yes, yes, it’s beautifully shot, and the leads aren’t hollywood-gorgeous, which is refreshing to see, but … I don’t see why they bothered.

Except …

I suppose, for a brand, any publicity is good publicity – and I’m aware this blog post is just adding to that – but, I’ll be honest, this has made me rethink how I feel about the brand.  It’s not that I’m offended by the film – I’m not – but any brand that stoops to showing porn to get publicity, well … I’m not so sure that’s a brand I want to spend my money on.

This post originated at: All rights reserved.


  1. 15th February 2012 / 06:40

    whoa.. you weren't kiddin' 🙂 very odd… I never would have guessed this was in any way associated with a skincare brand…

    • 15th February 2012 / 09:51

      Me either! My response when the PR sent over the links was just: "Blimey!".

  2. 15th February 2012 / 09:49

    Wowza. I'm always skeptical when ads and things are criticised as being porny, because half the time its just sensual kissing and – omg – shoulders.

    For once, I agree with that description… lawdy.

    • 15th February 2012 / 09:52

      Yes, if it had just been the typical kissing and stuff, then I wouldn't have bothered posting – this just goes above and beyond what is necessary.

      Also, it looks very … cold.

  3. 15th February 2012 / 09:59

    Nahhhhh, I thought, come on! And then I was like, 'oh!'…. It's not offensive, just weird and a bit pointless. Am I supposed to have the urge to rush out and buy their cleanser or face cream because I've just seen two Swedes shagging in a lake????

    • 15th February 2012 / 10:02

      Apparently so … I'm not offended either, btw. Just … bemused.

  4. 15th February 2012 / 10:35

    Very odd. I've never tried Ren but I this definitely doesn't make me want to. I don't understand the link with skincare at all? Seems to promote natural water and… (ahem)… natural methods more than it does manufactured products. Not offended at all, just slightly baffled.

  5. 15th February 2012 / 10:53

    Looking at the video alone, I'm not sure exactly what they are trying to promote. I'm not offended but like most people I'm just wondering how this links to their products. Maybe I'm not thinking hard enough 🙂

    • 15th February 2012 / 11:19

      I suspect the brand have been thinking TOO hard about this, hence the film and the "controversy" they're trying to whip up.

  6. 15th February 2012 / 11:10

    Here's the thing. Ok – a few things.
    As I said on twitter – let's call a spade a spade: this is a video of two people shagging to sell skincare made by a company run by two men.
    I don't apply face mask and think 'ooh I fancy a shag now!'
    I doubt she felt CLEAN after having sex in a dirty lake. Unless of course they are pig farmers by trade.
    I'm fairly sure what she's saying is 'Actually I've got a sea urchin up me minge.'
    Alrighty then.

  7. 15th February 2012 / 11:18

    Wow that was awkward. Is that how they want their customers to feel? In that case, job done!

  8. 15th February 2012 / 11:24

    When I watched this on Charlotte's blog my jaw was on the floor! I don't get the link with skincare but since Caroline's reply it all makes sense.

    Sex sells, but more so in men's products. Isn't Ren aimed at women? Or is this a 'women's porn, sex sells ad' instead.

    Why do brands feel the need to try and shock. Let the product shine without using more and more gratious sex, nudity and shock tactics.

  9. 15th February 2012 / 11:29

    I have used Ren in the past and they're good products but I saw this and thought "WTF?!?!" This would put me off using them again because it is such a gratuitous and irrelevant video. What is the point of creating quality products and then producing this?

  10. 15th February 2012 / 11:42

    I honestly see the video as a pointless bit of promotion and that they've exploited the notion that sex sells.

  11. 15th February 2012 / 11:47

    I love REN products, this silly video will not put me off at all. How about this companies that test on animals???they don't advertise it but all of us know. Anyway I agree, irrelevant naughty video..maybe it was on the humorous side? since they are a Swedish brand and a bit more free spirited about sex than others????

    • 15th February 2012 / 12:34

      But, they're not a Swedish brand. They're British!

  12. 15th February 2012 / 12:04

    Ulrika Johnson aside I don't buy the whole 'Swedish free-spirited' bollocks. We all have sex.
    It's made by men for men. It's a mans idea of what is sexy. 'Ooh close up on the nipple!'
    And the more I think about it the more I think 'what a bunch of classless twats.

    • 15th February 2012 / 12:27

      I'm *totes* buying you a bottle of the Rose Otto bath oil this year. Watching your expression will be superfun!

  13. 15th February 2012 / 12:30

    Sigh. I'll take it to Brighton with me. Use it after I've had a bit in the sea.
    Superfun. Totes. *loads gun*

  14. 15th February 2012 / 12:52

    I had only seen the non-edited version of this and although I've wanted to try REN skincare before I'm completely put off by this. I can safely say I've gone off the brand in a big way and have no interest in ever trying anything from them. Now, watching the edited version I have to say it's not much better. His hands on her back and the creepy soundtrack – just, no. It all makes me feel grossly uncomfortable and I can't believe I've now watched both versions! My eyes! x

  15. 15th February 2012 / 13:29

    I'm disappointed in Ren. I previously perceived them as a 'classy' brand, delivering natural products at a premium price. This advert detracts from their classy image, and to be honest, when you're spending £30 on a bottle of bath oil, image plays a large part in your willingness to spend the cash.

    I'm also boggling at the idea that these are 'normal' people which makes this all ok, expressed on other blogs. Ok, they aren't the inflatable porn superstars, with bleached hair and acrylic nails, but they still are two attractive models being asked to fake sex to sell a product.

    • 19th February 2012 / 13:22

      I have to agree – whilst this is "classily" done, that still doesn't make it a classy thing to do.

      Whilst I think we all agree that "sex sells", the real question is, why do we have to put up with it?

  16. 15th February 2012 / 15:30

    I really don't see the problem with this. Then again I lived in Paris for a while where nudity and sex was often used in advertising. For me personally, I would rather see sex used in advertising than 'hate' or something that perpetuates a stereotype etc. I think us Brits aren't really used to it. That said, I wish there wasn't a need for sex to sell a product, but unfortunately we live in a society that's a little sex obsessed…whether we talk about it or not.

  17. 15th February 2012 / 20:31

    I'm with you on this one,I can't think why they thought this would appeal to their customer base. When I think of Ren I'd rather not have an image of a nut sack etc come to mind.

    • 19th February 2012 / 13:23

      I'd rather my first thought after thinking about Ren these days wasn't "chilly cockenballs" too …. 😉

  18. 15th February 2012 / 22:37

    Just. Plain. Weird.
    Especially the bit at the end on the jetty. I was half expecting Harry Hill to pop up from beneath the water.

  19. 15th February 2012 / 23:38

    First, standard beauty product gubbins.

    Second, just generally bemused. What's a couple shagging in a lake got to do with bath oil? Why do we need an 'uncut' version? (please check for lakeweed and small fish on your way out) At least the Herbal Essences fake orgasm ones are taking the piss.

  20. 16th February 2012 / 00:23

    I saw this advert on the Ren twitter feed and loved it but equally I could tell it would raise a few English eyebrows. In Scandinavia these type of ads have been around since the 80's. I remember seeing a Timotei ad in Finland that a) was very very different to the english version and b) made hair washing seem unbelievably sexy. That message stayed with me. To this day I love having my hair washed by an OH or vice versa. I love Ren products and this ad hasnt changed that.

  21. 16th February 2012 / 00:37

    This campaign takes 'Sex sells' to a whole other level! I mean come on.. she's riding him like sea biscuit in water!!!

  22. 16th February 2012 / 21:37

    I am sorry but I think there's a confusion of terms. Since when showing a pair of breasts and a bit of a bottom is "soft porn"??? What about then all the mainstream TV series and films (romantic comedies even!)?! They should also be considered as soft porn as they show people making out/love and their nipples, breasts, abs, bottoms… 'cmon, let's not get exaggerate! The film IS beautiful and funny (-how do you feel? – clean = what a smart way to refer to their products!).

    • 19th February 2012 / 13:25

      I agree that it is beautiful – I make mention of that in the post. And I'd agree that breasts and bottoms aren't soft porn. But I think this goes slightly beyond just using nudity to sell something, and crosses a line that's unnecessary.

  23. 19th February 2012 / 17:45

    Hhmmm. Not sure how I feel about this. But I do feel a bit negative towards the brand now.

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