IKEA Asks Women to Pee on Their New Ad for a Discount

We asked the Swedish furniture retailers one question: Why?
January 10, 2018, 2:16pm
Photos courtesy of IKEA

Although I have never—to my knowledge—been pregnant, I know plenty of women who have been knocked up. By all accounts, it sounds like a moderately taxing experience that involves your nipples changing color and needing to puke and pee all the time. Plus, it's expensive; the average cost of raising a child in the US is estimated at around $13,000 a year, or $233,610 from birth to age 17.

So it makes sense that you’d try to cut costs wherever possible—but pissing on an IKEA advert to get a discount on the already-affordable Swedish furniture chain? If you ask me, that just seems a little unnecessary.


AdWeek reports that the cut-price mega retailer has released a new magazine advert that—if peed on by a pregnant woman—releases a special discounted price for cribs. “Peeing on this ad may change your life,” reads the advert for the 995krona ($122) crib, printed in Swedish women's magazine Amelia.

The advert, a collaboration between advertising agency Åkestam Holst and Mercene Labs, uses technology similar to that used in home pregnancy kits. An accompanying video explains the ad in more detail, although unfortunately it doesn’t feature a real-life pregnant woman squatting in the soft furnishing aisle, urine trickling down her leg. Rather, a pipette is used to dispense urine on the page, revealing a special “family price” for the crib (of 495 kroner, or $80).

Predictably, the campaign’s made quite the splash. “Ikea, taking the piss,” observed one Twitter user, concisely. “When was the last time you peed on a magazine? Now that's a really creative ad from IKEA!” came a more celebratory tweet.

For More Stories Like This, Sign Up for Our Newsletter

We reached out to the IKEA press office for some—any—explanation. “‘IKEA is for the many people—and we want to show life as it is for as many of us as we can," spokesperson Patrik Nygren-Bonnier told us. "IKEA’s products are inspired by life itself, and are all a big part of the everyday life at home. Of course everyday life can be dull at times, but it also contains those magical, life-changing moments. We want to be right there when they happen, and through the ‘where life happens’ campaign we take that idea all the way. What could be more true to this than the moment of creating life?"

I still have some questions, like, how will IKEA determine who is pregnant when applying the discount? Why would anyone bother peeing on the advert when you can find out the discounted price online? Also, does a $50 discount really change anyone’s life? Next up: poop on a takeout menu for free sides.