Gillette – The Besterest

Reinvigorating a declining brand


For over 100 years Gillette has pushed the boundaries of shaving technology. But in Australia in 2021 there was a problem. Gillette was a Dad brand. And we were living in the Bearded Age. Young Aussies were in the grip of a bearded phenomenon beginning with the legendary Hipster Lumberjack circa 2005, reached ‘peak beard’ in 2013, then ‘peak-peak beard’ in 2018, continuing into the pandemic years where nonchalance and style collided. Young Aussie blokes weren’t shaving. Gillette was hurting. It was time for a shake-up.


When Gillette – and shaving – has gone from rite of passage brand to Dad’s brand, how could we make Gillette part of young Aussie bloke culture once again?


There’s only one thing you can do with a Dad brand if you’re trying to appeal to 16-29 year-old Aussie blokes: take the piss. We flipped the script on Gillette’s own decades-long, tried and trusted archetypes clean-shaven, chiselled-jawline athletes, reinventing the brand’s identity and vibe for a younger crop of Aussie blokes who appreciate the brands with the balls to poke a bit of fun at themselves.

Enter Julian Dennison. You may know the young Kiwi actor as the precocious, roguish conscience to older, sometimes misdirected men, from Hunt for the Wilderpeople and Deadpool 2.

You may also notice that Julian can barely grow bumfluff, let alone shave it. He was the perfect foil to Gillette’s Dad brand status. And he was at the point in his life where he was about to buy his first razor-and-blade.

The campaign let Julian run roughshod over every Gillette ‘Dad’s brand’ stereotype, from the improbably chiselled jawline of the typical Gillette man to the way Gillette showcased product, to – gasp – the original ‘The Best A Man Can Get’ by John Parr in 1989, re-recorded to sound like…1989. He even inspired us to change Gillette’s legendary, 33 year-old tagline.


The Besterest campaign drove growth for Gillette for the first time in 10 years: +4% in 2021.
It also helped us sell a record number of handles, growing volumes by +11% vs YA).
Unaided brand awareness amongst young Aussie blokes was up +10pts and ad recall was 2.5x the previous Gillette campaign.

Finally, the Besterest campaign drove a 2.5x return on investment.
Reaffirming Gillette’s role as the Best(erest) young Aussie blokes can get.

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