The truth behind the Axe Re-Brand

Axe: Who are they now?


“Find your Magic”

When you drop the name “Axe”, you may be thinking of a 16-year-old kid spraying on a cloud of obnoxious smelling body spray onto themselves.  This is a perception that Unilever, the makers of Axe products have gone to great lengths to go from.

In 2016, Unilever released an ad campaign spearheaded by an Ad at the Superbowl called “Find your Magic”.  The ad showcases “regular men” in various forms simply doing and being who they love.  They saw the writing on the wall that the fad of overly aggressive and oversexed masculinity was fading, and masculinity was being redefined promoting self-expression and being yourself.

“We want to make it clear it doesn’t matter how you define masculinity, which is very different than some of the storytelling we’ve done in the past,” said Matthew McCarthy, senior director of Axe and men’s grooming at Unilever.

Unilever, the owner of products like Dove Men and Tresemme, in conjunction with 72andSunny in Amsterdam launched their “Find your magic campaign”. With the Axe brand slowly failing, they needed to make a change before they lost complete touch with potential clientele.  Niche brands of shaving products, body and face care products were gaining a hold on the people Axe was attempting to market to.  The kids who were bathing in body spray had grown and masculinity was being redefined quickly and they were spending their money elsewhere.

Product run down

Axe has trimmed their product line and has some more evolved products.  They include a charcoal body wash, a Tobacco and Amber deodorant, as well as many other deep changes.  The scents are more refined and don’t smell like a late night at a tacky nightclub.

Screencaps of Axe’s product page



What I’ve Tried

I decided to check out their “Gold Temptation” a Chocolate and Amber scent and their “Gold” Oud wood and Vanilla deodorant.  Honestly, I was very surprised when I got them home from the store and tried them.  The body wash smells great and it’s not overpowering.  It washes off clean and doesn’t leave an offensive lingering scent.  The deodorant has a bit stronger of a smell, it’s a bit overpowering, but the scent isn’t obnoxious.  It’s no more overpowering than what Old Spice offers or any other store-bought brand.

I would absolutely buy Axe now.  I’m not concerned with what other people’s perceptions are.  I’m willing to use what I personally like.  I find it a refreshing and positive change by Unilever to a failing brand that was outdated.  Niche products can be expensive, and there aren’t a ton of store brands for men still in 2018.  Nivea, Old Spice,  and Dove seem to be the most popular aside from Axe, and I will be trying out more of their stuff for further review.


Read More

Here are some other articles I have found on the subject if you are interested in reading more:

Huffington Post: Axe Wants To Shed Its Douchey Reputation And Empower Men

Racked: Axe Leaves Behind Its Legacy of Sexism by Tackling Toxic Masculinity

Campaign: Case study: How Axe redefined masculinity

The truth behind the Axe Re-Brand
Article Name
The truth behind the Axe Re-Brand
Get an update on what the AXE brand has been doing. Check out their re-branding campaign and their new look and style.
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Common Man Grooming
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