From today through Jan. 1, Ad Age will be counting down the brand ideas and campaigns that made 2020.
No. 30: Early on in the pandemic, with hair salons closed, L’Oreal had the genius idea of asking Eva Longoria to record herself dyeing her own hair at her home in L.A. The actress filmed herself using two smart phones, with agency McCann Paris providing remote direction via Microsoft Teams. In a category rife with polished scenes of celebrities looking their finest (even when they're supposed to be doing "normal" things like washing their faces or applying makeup), the spot brought unexpected authenticity (her gray roots feature prominently) and struck a chord with the millions of viewers also resorting to home hairdos. The brand and agency had turned out other compelling messages this year, including a spot featuring a gripping speech from Viola Davis, but this spot surprised with its new take on a genre gone stale with its conventions of perfection.
Quarantine has thrown up some pretty surprising ad campaigns so far, and here's another one—especially for all those previously skeptical about celebrities in ads for home hair color kits. If you were ever one of those viewers who watched in cynical disbelief that a super-wealthy Hollywood star could (or would) really apply hair color by themselves, here's living proof that they can, as L'Oreal Paris spokesperson Eva Longoria "directs" herself doing just that in an ad for its Excellence Crème hair range.
The ad was filmed by Longoria using two smartphones in her own L.A. home to comply with social distancing. Agency McCann Paris provided her with remote direction via Microsoft Teams. (The brand was also recently featured in another campaign for the tech platform, as Microsoft is another McCann client).
We see her first with her grey roots ("I've never been this grey in my life!" she exclaims) and then applying the kit herself. Longoria even does her own blow dry and, according to the agency, did her own makeup.
The campaign will run on TV and on social media in L’Oreal Paris’ core markets of the U.S., U.K., France and Germany, and will also roll out in additional countries. It promotes the idea of "self-care being self-worth," a new, pandemic-themed spin on the brand's long-running "Because you're worth it" tagline.
"When my L’Oréal family approached me to do this campaign, I was excited to direct this first of its kind commercial," said Longoria in a statement. "It’s a challenging time for everyone right now as we try and juggle all of our responsibilities and the needs of our loved ones, but it’s also important to remember to take care of ourselves. In this commercial, viewers can see how easy it is to get expert results and the confidence boost they deserve while at home. Self-care is self-worth and now, more than ever, we are all worth it!”