With last year’s “Marriage Market Takeover” campaign, global prestige skincare brand SK-II successfully drove overwhelming awareness and
conversations around “leftover women”. As an extension to its #changedestiny philosophy, SK-II premieres “The Expiry Date” (https://youtu.be/92S4-tpZLts) worldwide today – a new film aimed at examining the unspoken timelines and expiration date society places on women. In it, SK-II turns the proverbial expiration date many women feel like they have into a real one, highlighting the age-related pressure and internal struggles women face.
SK-II conducted a large-scale study1 for the first time in Japan, Korea, China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, United States, United Kingdom and Australia in order to gain an in-depth understanding of age-related pressure. According to the study, over 50% Asian women think that society places an expiry date on women, implying that when a woman reaches a certain age and is single, she would be looked upon as an anomaly. In Hong Kong, one out of three women feel that they live according to the pre-decided timeline2 society places on them, while 50% of Hong Kong single women under 30 mention that questions from friends, family, parents and colleagues contribute substantially to their age-related pressure. Beyond unmasking the real problems women face through the new film, SK-II also hopes to create a welcoming arena through #INeverExpire, enabling women to open up and share their inner thoughts on the topic, while encouraging them to free themselves from age-related pressure and change their destiny without the limitation of age and gender.
Age-Related Discrimination is a Global Issue; 80% Hong Kong Women Face Unspoken Pressure
SK-II’s latest study reveals that Asian women are suffering from age-related pressure. More
1 This survey was conducted online by Procter & Gamble in May 2017 among 4,280 women and 3,261 men ages 18 years of age and older in the following countries Japan, Korea, China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, United States, United Kingdom and Australia.
2 Pre-decided timeline refers to living under a timeline that has been decided in advance and one which complies with social expectations, covering events such as education, marriage, career and having children.
than four out of ten Hong Kong women state that they are anxious about ageing, and only 10% of Hong Kong women are happy about the idea of getting older. 50% of Hong Kong single women surveyed felt uncomfortable and offended by other people’s view on their status especially with regards to topics about their age or marital status. 72% of Korean women and 62% of Chinese women feel offended if others show excessive interest in their relationship status.
Providing perspective to this, Dr Sandy To, Hong Kong sociologist and author of acclaimed book China’s Leftover Women, said that age-related discrimination is a global issue that women have to face nowadays. The pressure becomes very real when she reaches mid 30s, 35 and up. At a certain age, when a woman is single and doesn’t have a family, she is looked upon as an anomaly. While 68% of Hong Kong women describe the age-related pressure as internal, close to 80% state that anxiety stemming from ageing is something they want to discuss with others.
Sparking Social Reflection with ”Expiry Date” Imprint
The film follows the journey of three women from China, Japan and Korea, as they pass through stages in life with growing internal and external pressure of timelines placed on them by society – manifested creatively as an increasingly visible physical expiry date imprinted on their forearm. The aim is to showcase the unspoken timelines society places on women and spark a conversation around age-related pressure that women all over Asia, and indeed the world, experience.
SK-II Encourages #INeverExpire Social Movement to Inspire Global Conversation and Remove Age-Related Stigma
“The Expiry Date” will resonate among women with the portrayal of a life under the shadow of an “expiry date” and age-related pressure. SK-II hopes to reinforce the message that everyone should be able to feel proud of what they’ve achieved and who they are, regardless of age and gender, while inspiring conversations to eliminate the “expiry date” stigma. At the same time, SK-II has created a welcoming arena with #INeverExpire, inviting women in Asia and worldwide to share their age-related pressure and personal stories, while encouraging them to free themselves from the constraints placed on them by the society and change their destiny.