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Reviewer: Aman Mannan

Aman Mannan is group executive creative director at Leo Burnett India, where he moved from DDB Mudra Group, having previously worked at McCann Erickson and Interface Communications. In the decade he has spent in advertising, Mannan has worked on brands including Union Bank of India, Future Group, Godrej No.1, Lipton, HBO, ICICI Lombard, Saffola, Parachute and Nerolac.


Hair-oil brand Dabur Vatika’s Brave & Beautiful commercial by Linen Lintas shows a young mother, a cancer survivor, who is trying to get her life back to normal in the face of trying circumstances. After sessions of chemotherapy, the protagonist has lost her hair, which leads her to constantly doubt her own identity. The campaign shows the woman’s husband and daughter being supportive of her as she gathers the courage to resume work. Although nervous at first, she is surprised to see the warmth with which her colleagues greet her.

Your first thoughts on the campaign?

It is brave, beautiful, unexpected and sentimental.

What would you have done differently?

It is not fair to ask something like that. You have to be brave as an agency to put this on the table. And you have to be brave as a client to take it forward. I would love to see more than just cinema on this. I would love to see the real difference the brand can make.

Is this quite a bold stand against endorsements by celebrities or typically “beautiful" women?

Of course, it shows the human side of a brand, which is the endeavour of every brand. (I) Don’t think it is against celebrity endorsement per se. It is about a point of view on beauty. Celebrities have their place under the sun, most time though to show them off when you don’t have anything to say.

Do you think consumers of grooming products will relate to this campaign?

Before they are consumers, they are people, and people of our country relate to and love emotions. So this campaign should touch them.

Within haircare as a category, any ads that have caught your attention lately, Indian or international?

I liked how Parachute shot the new Deepika Padukone ad. But the category, like most of the beauty category, is a bit fearful of saying something new. Often, the faces change but the words coming out are the same. Yes, Dabur Vatika stands out in that world.

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