Gender-Enforcing Soap for Your Fragile Masculinity

Yet another ad campaign based on the idea that the worst thing in the world is to be, or resemble, a woman. Now in Regular or Extra Sexist.

Do you have a “mangina”? According to one company, Duke Cannon Supply Co. if you aren’t using their army green “big ass bricks of soap” you do. The Women’s section of the Huffington Post reports,

Duke Cannon Supply Co., purveyor of army green “big ass bricks of soap,” presents “mangina” as a medical condition which must be eradicated using, you guessed it, big ass bricks of soap. According to the company’s website, men who have “mangina” exhibit symptoms such as shopping at Abercrombie & Fitch, liking LMFAO and spending their hard-earned dollars on bottle service and fancy cars.

And what, you might ask could possibly cause someone to have these “mangina” symptoms? Thankfully, Duke Cannon Supply Co. explains all that as well. It’s all the “feminine shower gels and accessories” of course. Their website says,

This soap product is designed to meet the high standards of hard working men who want to get clean & smell good without using feminine shower gels and accessories.

And to make it that much more manly, the soap is designed after, and produced in the same factory that made military issue soap for more than 20 years. Duke Cannon seems to imply that masculinity can be infused into the product simply by being made within the same factory that produced soap for so many soldiers, the epitome of masculinity.

Heaven forbid a man be concerned with moisturizing or exfoliating. Concerns of that nature are obviously estrogen (which men have too) fueled symptoms of the “mangina”, which men should be so terrified of coming down with that they absolutely must buy the Duke Cannon Supply Co. products.

This kind of dumb, deliberately ugly and hurtful gender enforcement is degrading to both women and men. It is downright pathetic that in the 21st century, people are still trying to sell soap with this nonsense.


Photo—Ordinary Guy/Flickr

About Kathryn DeHoyos

Kathryn DeHoyos currently resides on the outskirts of Austin, TX. She has 2 beautiful children, and is very happily un-married to her life partner DJ.


  1. Note To Self: I have to say that I do think that this soap is well marketed – and when you go looking, something that Huffington and so many others have failed to do, you actually find that Good Man angle buried right there in the soap:

    Currently, we’re working with Honor Flight Network to give our American veterans a very well deserved trip and tribute that sadly they cannot afford on their own. Honor Flight Network transports the heroes of the armed forces to Washington, D.C. to visit and reflect at its memorials. It is an emotional day for many and one of the best of their lives for most.

    Duke Cannon Supply Company is proud to salute our brave troops and their families.

    So yeah it’s funny and the mangina angle is clever – but why oh why is it that when some guys do good things for other people it just ends up buried in a whole load of Crap about who has the bigger issues with who’s genitals and who is responsible for the ever rising price of hot air!

    I’m no lover of war or warfare – But I Do have One Hell Of A Respect For Old Soldiers – what ever their age! I also don’t care for the Old Soldiers sex, gender, sexuality, race, creed, HIV status, bank balance, socio-economic status or if they have english as a 1st, 2nd or 3rd+ language … hell they can even stink and refuse to bathe. Sometimes you just have to ignore the minor issues.

    Vets aint just for 1 day per year – and I don’t mean Christmas. These Good Guys get that, but it’s also getting missed. End Note To Self!

    You missed something!

  2. The soap is cool , but I prefer shower gel. Easier and faster bath ( and no drop and pick up soap!! )

    • Plus, there’s a growing selection of shower gels for men – Nivea For Men, Dove Men+ Care, Old Spice, Axe, just off the top of my head. Plus plenty of gender-neutral soap like Dial, Irish Spring, Purel, etc.. It’s not like a man’s choice is fruity/flowery soap or nothing at all. I don’t know what supermarkets these ad folks are shopping in.

      My husband uses the Nivea cooling body+hair wash and loves it. He also likes using a loofah. He is a very tactile guy and enjoys different textures and sensations.

      • interestingly ‘fruity or flowery’ were unisex perfumes/fragrances until the VictoEdwardian-construction* of masculinity and femininity starts to take shape from 1830s. In Britain at least, ‘masculinity’ and ‘femininity’ was less narrow, less corseted before then. After that basically musk, woody perfumes, or increasingly and preferably no-scent-worn was ‘masculine’.(this is from memory, notes are in disorder on parfume as i didnt note which sections to link,cite too)

        *when Western peoples talk of ‘traditional’ masculinity and femininity, that is really what they are referring to

  3. John Anderson says:

    Mangina is a term I’ve heard used to describe male feminists. Using that particular word instead of wuss or sissy probably connotes some meaning. It’s also telling that the story was picked up in the women’s section of the Huffington Post. That’s because men have been taught that one of the worst insults in the world is to have your masculinity questioned. It doesn’t spark the same outrage even in progressive men.

    Once my nephew had complained to me about getting an illegal hit during a taekwondo tournament, I guess he was looking for sympathy. I asked him if he was OK. He said yes so I told him that when you play a combat sport like taekwondo from time to time you’re going to take an illegal hit, accidents happen. If you can’t handle it put on a dress and I’ll buy you a Barbie. Granted, I didn’t know it at the time, but I was engaging in hegemonic masculinity. It did convey everything he needed to know in a way that he could understand.

    One person suggested I could have told him not to get his nose out of joint. Please, he would have looked at me like what are you talking about. Although I do agree with her that it’s not right that the worst thing you can call a man in this society is a woman. I think it will eventually change, but may require women to step up in athletics or the military. Unfortunately, women’s professional sports except for beach volleyball and tennis, which I could watch for short periods of time, are boring at least to me and they can’t even seem to be able to establish a fan base among women who played sports.

    • “Although I do agree with her that it’s not right that the worst thing you can call a man in this society is a woman. I think it will eventually change, but may require women to step up in athletics or the military.”

      Because it will change once women start acting more like men? In other words, if women are more like men it won’t be an insult to be called a woman.

      That’s still hegemonic masculinity. 😉

      • Julie – I’m sorry but I really can’t take references to hegemonic masculinity seriously when none of the chattering masses have bothered to even create a Wikipedia page for Hegemonic Femininity – and even give it a disambiguation with it’s true relationship to waxing, ex-foliating and other areas of supremacy and control.

        You have also missed the logical conclusion of equality in access to soap!

        Mangina is one thing and a Feminis (Sic) quite another. So many expect us guys to just lie down and take it as soon as a Feminis (Sic) is in the room – and its all over apart from the Femsplaining!

        • I will say I enjoy your prose. But I don’t really ever know how to communicate with you. Did you see my wink at the end of the post? If femininity was hegemonic, then a man being compared to a woman would probably be a good thing. I’m not sure it often is, so far as men are concerned.

          And what are you talking about with expecting men to lie down? And soap?

          • Julie – I still have nightmares imagining you as a steam punk in a corset! P^)

            Man is to Mangina as Feminist is to ?????? (Sic).

            Maybe I should not have left the gap in “Feminis (Sic)” as evidently no matter what us guys do some will see a gap and stick things in it!

          • Oh I’m glad you were able to address that point with words kinder than what I had typed in a box, and then erased, last week.
            MH, your writing is clever, witty, and creative, but at times your language obscures your meaning. No offense intended, just an observation.

            • No offence taken – but at times it is tiresome having to research so much of US culture because it’s assumed that all readers are from a specific continental zone – and it does obscure so much. I’ve even been told I’m stupid whilst making explicit reference to NON US statutes, but you can’t please all the folks all of the time – or even some of the time! P^)

      • John Anderson says:

        “Because it will change once women start acting more like men? In other words, if women are more like men it won’t be an insult to be called a woman.

        That’s still hegemonic masculinity”

        I suspect that it would be a impulse not easily done away with. I’m still trying to come up with something I would understand at 15 that would convey the same thing as put on a dress and I’ll buy you a Barbie without the hegemonic masculinity.

        • I’m still trying to come up with something I would understand at 15 that would convey the same thing as put on a dress and I’ll buy you a Barbie without the hegemonic masculinity.

          other insults that suggests weakness would be to say, ‘he needs a dummy and nappies (pacifier and diapiers)’, or ‘awww, does the baby want burping’

  4. Some clever advertising using Tropes that people have left lying around! Of course, because it plays upon sex and words twisted around genitalia some with knee jerkitis will supper Gender Related Apoplexy and head for the great God Twit to worship at the icon of the #FatSparrowCult.

    Reminds me of the Viral Spoof some years ago about rice at weddings – Don’t Throw Rice because Birds eat it – they swell up and explode! Total rubbish but as they say There is a Sucker born every minute. Now you have the wedding industry of Bird Seed to Throw – Special Organic Rice which is Guaranteed to not lead to mass slaughter or explosions of Twittering Things of your special day – A guaranteed bargain at a price of $23million per ton. Take a stupid idea and make millions – how could anyone object to the American Dream as advertised?

    As for products being infused with mystical elements of their place of orogin – now wouldn’t that be nice – Empathic Consumerism. If that thing in your hand has been made by people being abused or exploited, you can feel it and make a real concious decisions about what the cost is to you and others. Imagine Empathic web pages – put your hand on the screen and be able to call BS instantly!


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