Last weekend, a Facebook advertisement for Dove body wash showed a 3-second GIF of 3 different women. It started with a black woman removing her brown shirt to reveal a white woman with a light shirt and so on. Many people are calling out the advertisement as being racist.
There is an internal investigation within the company to figure out how the ad was reviewed and approved in the first place. Dove, which is owned by Unilever, has since apologized and posted on their Facebook emphasizing “their commitment to representing the beauty of diversity.”
It’s an unfortunate trend that continues in the United States. This is not the company’s first incident. Another situation occurred in May 2011 when one of their ads showed three women, each of different complexions, standing side by side. The ad promoted their skin products by showing a black woman with cracked skin, along with a sign that read “Before.” The camera then moving to a white woman with smooth skin with the sign that read, “After”. Their campaign message was “Visibly more beautiful skin.”
Many consumers are not satisfied with the company’s apology and their repeated offenses, and have said they will no longer be purchasing Dove’s products.