Being the Spokesperson for Embarrassing Products

May 6, 2013

Lisa Rinna in a Depends commercial

Do you experience occasional irregularity? Do your dentures give off an annoying odor, interfering with your confidence in social interactions? How about erectile dysfunction, excessive gas, or athlete’s feet…getting you down? Well, aren’t you glad there are products that address these awkward matters? I’m sure we all are, because no one is immune to the vicissitudes of this life no matter how well we take care of our health or personal hygiene. But where the rubber meets the road for you, as an actor, is when you’re cast in a commercial addressing these uncomfortable conditions. This is something you’ll want to think about before you’re afforded a promotional opportunity.

Jamie Lee Curtis brings humor and a down-to-earth openness to the topic of digestive irregularity in her role as the spokesperson for Activia yogurt. Florence Henderson, otherwise known as the beloved Carol Brady of The Brady Bunch is the spokesperson for Polident denture cleaner. And Days of Our Lives and Melrose Place star, Lisa Rinna is shown in a Depends commercial walking the red carpet wearing an adult diaper. Lisa stands behind her decision to tout what could be considered an unglamorous product saying, “I am a champion of positive self-image for women; the new Silhouette makes a woman feel confident.” So, it’s obviously not the career kiss of death to endorse one of these delicate products. But it should be noted these women have long and storied professional resumes behind them.

In this regard, you–as an up and coming prospect–might want to give some thought to the products you want your image attached to; or, more specifically, the products you’d rather not be associated with. It’s a good idea to talk with your agent and get clear on your professional image and how you’d like to be perceived by the public. If you don’t have an agent, talk with your friends and family to dial in your professional goals and the decisions you’ll make in getting where you want to go.

While there’s nothing wrong with experiencing ailments like bloating, male pattern baldness, acne, or serious medical conditions, it’s not something people generally care to discuss with large groups of people. Thankfully, some people come forward to put a face on such issues. But in your career you need to clear as a bell as to who you are and how you wish to be perceived. This is true of just about every profession, but acting is a particularly conspicuous endeavor. That being said, success can certainly be achieved after being featured in such commercials. After all, starring in a 1980’s Australian Tampax tampons commercial didn’t stop Naomi Watts from having an outstanding, multi award-winning career.