Ad of the Day: Clearasil Says Acne Is Nothing Compared the Endless Hell of Teaching High School

Droga5 puts it all in perspective

Headshot of David Griner

When you're in high school, it's easy to feel like the daily torment of embarrassment and awkwardness will never end.

But it does end. For the students. The teachers, however, will find no escape in graduation.

In Droga5's new campaign for the acne treatment, teachers and faculty stoically describe the unending treadmill of their jobs and shrug off the fleeting frustrations of puberty.

"Teens, let's be clear. Teenage acne? It's not going to last forever," one teacher advises. "So next time you're worrying about a pimple, remember: The hard stuff? It'll all be over soon."

The message is a bit odd for a medication, since it seems to imply you can just wait out a pimple without incurring a lifetime of regret (which you certainly can). But it's a nice change in tone for an industry that's thrived on heightening teen insecurity and anxiety for decades.

Clearasil is also giving away 10 scholarships for $5,000, though the requirements are a bit clunky. A student must get a teacher to complete the following line: "Teen acne ends. You know what doesn't? ________"

I can't imagine a teacher getting too excited about confessing his or her career frustrations as a student's proxy in a marketing campaign, but given the vibe of soulless drudgery conveyed in these ads, maybe the teachers would be happy just to have some break in the monotony.


Client: Clearasil

Campaign: Teacher Truths

Agency: Droga5 NY

Creative Chairman: David Droga

Chief Creative Officer: Ted Royer

Group Creative Director: Tim Gordon

Copywriter: Sarah Lloyd

Art Director: Mary Dauterman

Design Director: Rich Greco

Senior Designer: Joseph Dasaro

Chief Creation Officer: SallyAnn Dale

Head of Broadcast Production: Ben Davies

Group Integrated Production Manager: Topher Lorette

Executive Broadcast Producer: Adam Perloff

Associate Producer: Jacqueline Omanoff

Head of Interactive Production: Niklas Lindstrom

Senior Interactive Producer: Tasha Cronin

Head of Art Production: Cliff Lewis

Associate Social Producer: Gabrielle Nicoletti

Global Chief Strategy Officer: Jonny Bauer

Strategy Director: Will Davie

Senior Brand Strategist: Danielle Travers

Social Strategy Director: Tom Hyde

Senior Social Strategist: Calvin Stowell

Data Strategy Director: Lily Ng

Data Strategist: Kaveri Gautam

Social Manager: Maureen O’Brien

Communications Strategy Director: Samantha Deevy

Group Account Director: Olivia Legere

Account Director: Megan Gokey

Account Manager: Ashton Atlas

Project Manager: Rayna Lucier

Integrated Production Business Affairs Manager: Tom Vendittelli

Client: Clearasil/Reckitt Benckiser

Chris Tedesco General Manager Marketing, RB US

Debra Eible Managing Director, RB US

Elyse Goldweitz Brand Manager, RB

Jessica Erb Clearasil Assistant Brand Manager

Erin Feeley Communications Manager

Production Company: Caviar Content

Director: Neal Brennan

Director of Photography: Andrew Wheeler

Executive Producer: Michael Sagol

Producer: Megan Porche

Editorial: Mackenzie Cutler

Editor: Ryan Steele

Assistant Editor: Zoe Newman

Executive Producer: Sasha Hirschfeld

Postproduction: Ricart and Co.

Executive Producer: Marcus Lansdell

Colorist: Seth Ricart

Sound Mixer: Chris Afzal

@griner David Griner is creative and innovation editor at Adweek and host of Adweek's podcast, "Yeah, That's Probably an Ad."