Dove is committed to real beauty: Only feature real women, never digitally alter their appearance, and help the next generation develop a positive relationship with their appearance. As Dove entered its 60th year, it wanted to instigate change in the industry by taking this commitment a step further.

Actress Laura Dern said it best at the 2017 Emmy’s: “I’ve been acting since I was 11 years old and I think I’ve worked with maybe 12 women.” A 2016 study revealed that 7 percent of major Hollywood movies were directed by women. The Geena Davis Institute found that when there are more women behind the camera, it directly correlates (as much as 10 percent) to more screen time and speaking time for females. 

Dove decided, therefore, to:

  • Build a Partnership Rooted in Co-Creation: Shonda Rhimes, American television producer, screenwriter and author, and Dove came together to create Real Beauty Productions and collaborate with real women to bring their personal stories to life.
  • Give Real Women A Voice: In March 2017, we released an announcement film calling for women to head to to share their personal stories that widen the definition of beauty. 
  • Create Real Change: We employed a 100 percent female crew to ensure a real women's perspective shaped each of the three films produced from every angle - in front of and behind the camera.

Between March 2017 and October 2017, Dove engaged Shonda Rhimes’ network of loyal fans, social influencers and women in the entertainment industry to bring the conversation to the forefront.  We began with a call for submissions by Shonda Rhimes and Dove on social media; strategically timed to ABC’s #TGIT (Thank God It’s Thursday) lineup, a prime time for engagement with Shonda’s fan base. We previewed the first film to an audience of over 800 digital influencers at the Mom 2.0 Summit and leveraged a keynote address by Julianna Margulies to drive views of the film the following week. We rooted work within the media industry by partnering with insiders, including the film’s director, Liz Garbus and 2017 Emmy nominees, Samira Wiley and Uzo Aduba, for a paid social play leveraging original quotes driving the conversation to inclusivity. Finally, we aired a 60 second TV spot during the Emmys to celebrate female storytelling.


  • Generated submissions from +4,000-real women
  • Garnered +3.3 billion earned media impressions across national media, with more than +26.6MM views
  • Named Best in Class long form content by YouTube
  • Film series featured women who don’t fit the mold of stereotypical beauty as usually seen in ads, which resonated with Millennial women and increased Brand Favorability lift: Film #2 – +1.7%, Film #3 – +3.1%
  • 99% positive conversation rate
  • 98% of editorial coverage were feature stories
  • 100% share of voice in coverage owned by Dove
  • The first cover story for the brand in print in Fast Company
  • Earned national morning show coverage on TODAY – despite earned branded content being increasingly difficult to land