New ad challenges the meaning of "like a girl"

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A new ad from Always asks what doing something "like a girl" really means.

The roughly three-and-a-half minute video produced by the feminine hygiene brand owned by Procter & Gamble asked similar questions - "Show me what it means to run like a girl", "Show me what it means to throw like a girl" - to a group of volunteers. Men, women and boys immediately imitated the action in a weaker, less competent manner using everything from limp hands to hair flips to further illustrate the point. Younger girls, however, did the actions deliberately and with great purpose.

The video is meant to empower females and attack what Always calls “the self-esteem crisis” among young girls, saying that females' self-esteem takes a notable dive during puberty - hence young girls not taking the connotation of "like a girl" into account.

The effort had an immediate impact at least on the female participants (the men aren't seen later in the video to know if they had a change of heart). One woman ended her interview asking, "Why can't 'run like a girl' also mean win the race?"

The idea isn't new. Pantene and Dove have each run similar campaigns meant to bring attention to long-running stereotypes or cultural differences between how the genders are viewed and treated. Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg's non-profit launched its "Ban Bossy" campaign earlier this year with a similar purpose.

You can watch Always' video in the player above this story or by clicking here. Leave your thoughts on the video in the comments below.