Ad standards quandary: Is a topless male acceptable if you think it's a woman?

By By Amy Kellow | 27 August 2012

Toyota Japan has adopted the topic of androgyny for its latest spot, launching a new spot that well and truly blends the perceived notions of gender.

Starring Israeli/Ukraine male model Stav Strashko, the ad carries the tagline 'Not trendy, not casual, not for everyone' and aims to promote its new Auris car.

The spot, shot from behind, shows the 19 year old strutting towards the car wearing a pair of red underwear. It then shows his feminine face, framed by blonde hair and earrings. The audience is clearly supposed to think it is a female, before he turns around to reveal his masculine chest.

The new ad already has over three million views since being uploaded just two weeks ago.

The ad has raised questions about advertising standards. While topless women are not acceptable in most advertising, topless men are allowed. But the question arises: What if it is a man you thought was a woman?

What do you think of the ad? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

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