Face Up to Face Wash

These billboards call you out by name to remind you to wash your face

May 12, 2021


biore, john st., applied arts, advertising, skincare, campaign

We’ve all had a parent or caretaker tell us to “wash behind our ears,” but have you ever, Gatsby-like, have a billboard speak directly to you, specifically your hygienic habits? Well, certain dwellers of apartment complexes in the GTA have thanks to a clever campaign by john st. and Bioré.

Not washing your face before bedtime is the “ultimate skin sin,” but it is one that we are all guilty of from time to time. Maybe we just need a nudge.

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“The problem is universal. But we knew the solution needed to feel personal, since we’re infiltrating people’s nighttime routine,” said Cam Boyd, Creative Director at john st., the agency behind the campaign. “That’s why we chose to use a mass media channel in a direct way, creating a billboard that feels like a text from a friend who knows you a little too well.”

Using census data to display the most common names in the adjacent apartment complexes to call out the non-washers, the solution is very personal. The billboards are running between 8PM and 2AM until May 16th, but Bioré wanted to hedge their bets to make sure you aren’t ignoring your visage, and have also turned its reminders into contextual pre-rolls, because who isn’t watching gaming videos on your phone, face unwashed?

The campaign has also leveraged Quebecois pop-culture for the Quebec market creating content that refers to popular Quebec TV shows. So really no excuse to deny your dermis it’s nightly douse.


Campaign Title: Wash Your Face Reminders, #skinimalism platform
Client: Kao Canada
Brand: Biore

Director of Marketing & Business Development, Kao Canada: Teri Barrigar
Associate Director of Marketing, Kao Canada: Lori Bianchi
Brand Manager, Biore: Monique Milewska

Agency: john st.
Chief Creative Officer: Cher Campbell
Creative Director: Cam Boyd
Associate Creative Director: Natalie Mathers
Copywriter: Maddie Rosenberg
Business Lead: Lindsay Day
Account Director: Jamie Faltl
Account Executive: Emily Sabetti

Media Agency: m/SIX
Associate Director of Planning: Nicole Saab

Kao Canada Inc. is a leading manufacturer of premium beauty care brands that are recognized around the world for their innovation and quality. The Kao Canada Inc. portfolio includes Jergens® and Curel® hand and body lotions, Bioré® facial care, and John Frieda® Frizz-Ease®, Volume Lift®, Sheer Blonde®, Brilliant Brunette®, and Radiant Red® hair care.