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From the New York Times news section:

Unilever and Johnson & Johnson Retreat on Pushing Lighter Skin

Unilever is removing the words “whitening,” “lightening” and “fairness” from its packaging for its Fair & Lovely brand.

By Priya Arora and Sapna Maheshwari
June 25, 2020

As major consumer products companies have rushed to declare their opposition to racism in response to the national outrage over the killing of George Floyd, many of them have been accused of openly promoting a beauty standard rooted in racism and discrimination.

Unilever, Procter & Gamble, L’Oreal and Johnson & Johnson — some of the world’s biggest advertisers — sell beauty products that advocate lighter, whiter skin in Africa, Asia and the Middle East. Those products are not marketed in the United States, but the sales of the skin lighteners have drawn criticism, especially from South Asians, for perpetuating colorism — the term describing the preference for lighter skin — in other countries, under popular brand names like Pond’s, Olay, Garnier and Neutrogena, and their own labels like Fair & Lovely.

The backlash appears to be forcing action. Unilever said on Thursday that it would remove the words “fair/fairness, white/whitening, and light/lightening” from product packaging and communications and change the name of its Fair & Lovely brand, a juggernaut in India that has marketed lighter skin as a path to success for decades. …

“We recognize that the use of the words ‘fair’, ‘white’ and ‘light’ suggest a singular ideal of beauty that we don’t think is right, and we want to address this,” said Sunny Jain, Unilever’s president of beauty and personal care. …

What kind of U-boat captain name is “Sunny Jain”?

In South Asia, anti-blackness and colorism have origins that predate colonialism and systemically reinforce differences in caste and class. …

Skin-lightening products are estimated to be a multibillion-dollar market, though its precise size is difficult to estimate, particularly as brands alter the language on their products to less overtly promote changes in skin tone. Fair & Lovely, for example, will continue to be sold, though Unilever noted it had removed “before-and-after impressions and shade guides that could indicate a transformation.”

Mr. Jain announced that Fair & Lovely’s new slogan will be: “Look more like George Floyd!”

 
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  1. Priyanka Chopra, a leading Bollywood actress who has also acted in Hollywood films, came under fire recently for endorsing the Black Lives Matter movement while at the same time being a brand ambassador for skin-lightening creams in India. Critics say that this movie star cannot claim to support a movement against racism when she herself has promoted products that suggest that light/white skin is more beautiful than dark/black skin.”

  2. Anon[204] • Disclaimer says:

    You know, it should be illegal to sell hair straightening products to black women! They are being exploited. Keep it natural.

  3. Richard S says:

    In South Asia, anti-blackness and colorism have origins that predate colonialism

    So … it’s a home-grown aspect of their culture? Doesn’t that mean that these giant western corporations, Big Greasepaint, are trying to impose their cultural norms and way of life on the native females?

    Seems problematic…

    • Replies: @Jack D
  4. From Benny Hill’s spoof of Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?: “She’s beautiful, and she uses Pond’s.”

  5. I understand the problem, but shutting down the whole Pond’s Institute? Will that be all of the campuses? It’d be a shame to put so many white(ening) women out of work.

  6. Not to worry, unz.com lady readers, all 5 of you, as Target will still keep their generic Up&Up versions of these very same products. Just get the white jars with purple or green lettering that say “Compare to Fair & Lovely The Estranged Widow Floyd Complexion”.

    And for those (even fewer) Lady Geek beauty products consumers, there will be generic brands with Hex codes to indicate the skin shades desired. We feel that our #010101 will be a big seller. For those who desired our more swarthy #F9FCFF, it will be right there for you, locked behind the counter.

    • LOL: AnotherDad
    • Replies: @El Dato
    , @Hypnotoad666
  7. If they were ideologically consistent, they’d stop selling the products rather than engaging in mind-numbed virtue-signalling.

    Lightening Science equals Violence.

  8. Dumbo says:

    Fair & Lovely, for example, will continue to be sold, though Unilever noted it had removed “before-and-after impressions and shade guides that could indicate a transformation.”

    Why? It’s bizarre that they sell a product with success and then want to hide what it does. In that case maybe rename it to “Black & Beautiful” (nudge, nudge, wink, wink). Orwellian times, indeed.

  9. Go into a convenience store in Thailand and half the products are for skin lightening.

  10. I’m pretty certain People of Color have no clue how obsessed People of Light are about changing their skin color to be darker through tanning. We even go so far as to keep the dermatology industry booming by risking skin cancer, just so we can be tan.

    I once dated a black lady, and she brought up skin color beauty standards. From what I could tell, she had a single relative that practiced skin lightening, and he was looked at with pity from his relatives. All of my relatives tan themselves, whether mowing the grass shirtless, lying on the beach for hours, or even using tanning beds… and they’re all encouraged by others on their positive results.

    But the thing is, neither her cousin nor all white people want to switch teams (notwithstanding certain pop Kings and anti-Christian hucksters). Rather, it seems that both extremes are generally seeking skin tone balance, making the middle shades the “standard of beauty”. For empirical evidence that this IS the global standard, see how often tan women from Columbia and Venezuela win global beauty pageants. (Ok that’s not very scientific… but wow are they gorgeous).

    • Replies: @Anonymous
    , @Buffalo Joe
  11. Jack D says:

    What kind of U-boat captain name is “Sunny Jain”?

    Uniliever is an Anglo-Dutch company. Why would the head of an Anglo-Dutch company have a U-boat captain name?

    • Replies: @Joe Stalin
    , @Anonymous
  12. BB753 says:

    Sad. I was always a fan of Pink Floyd.

  13. While Asians spend billions to make their skin whiter , Americans spend billions making their skin darker.

    • Replies: @The Wild Geese Howard
  14. I have notice that Xhosa women in Khayelitsha (Black township suburb of Cape Town) use Calamine lotion as a skin lightener. They often apply it unevenly resulting sometimes in a strangely mottled look.

  15. Patriot says:

    Lighten your skin = racism.

    Darken your skin (such as getting a real or fake tan) = not racism, personal choice.

  16. anon[427] • Disclaimer says:

    I’m tired of seeing tanning lotions and creams, but no one cares.

  17. I don’t know what this clip is saying but I can hear the word “petition” and tell that the TV producer has a sense of humor.

  18. CBC covered this earlier this year, in Torontai. Don’t use hydroquinone to treat Covid!!

    https://www.cbc.ca/news/health/marketplace-skin-whitening-lightening-beauty-shadism-1.5454257

  19. Jack D says:
    @Richard S

    It’s true that colorism existed in India before the colonial era but in the old days they didn’t buy jars of Fair & Lovely and other Western Imperialist products. They smeared themselves with bear grease or tiger bone extract or something and advertising was by word of mouth or witchdoctor instead of on Bollywood soap operas so it’s still wrong to have Unilever disrupt the traditional methods.

    Truthfully, using modern production and advertising methods, they probably sell 1,000 times more of this stuff than in the old days where if you wanted to lighten your skin you first had to catch a deer and grind up its antlers or whatever the remedy was. OTOH, if Unilever backs away from this market, this will just make room for modern local products – no going back to nightingale tongues. Apparently many of the Asian made products (and THEY are not going to back away from this market – they don’t give two damns about George Floyd and virtue signalling) contain toxic levels of mercury so George Floyd is going to get even more people killed. George Floyd – the gift that keeps on giving.

  20. Pericles says:

    What kind of U-boat captain name is “Sunny Jain”?

    I’m taken aback that Sunny Balwani (Theranos) has already been forgotten.

    Perhaps it means Grifter in the local tongue?

  21. @Jack D

    “Sunny Jain” – Captain of the Corporate Ship.

  22. Coincidentally, Sunny Jain is also the name of a fairly prominent Brooklyn-based Indian-American musician and bandleader:

    Sunny Jain (born 1975) is an American dhol player, drummer, and composer. He is recognized as a lead voice in the burgeoning movement of South Asian-American jazz musicians.[1] His seven albums have all received international acclaim for their “groundbreaking synthesis” (Coda Magazine), as he brings together the ancient sounds of his cultural heritage, jazz and a host of other sounds.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sunny_Jain

  23. El Dato says:

    As major consumer products companies have rushed to declare their opposition to racism in response to the national outrage over the killing of George Floyd, many of them have been accused of openly promoting a beauty standard rooted in racism and discrimination.

    Atrocious, utterly retarded writing that doesn’t even merit deconstruction.

    This is the “news” of 2020.

    Unilever said on Thursday that it would remove the words “fair/fairness, white/whitening, and light/lightening” from product packaging

    Wow, no “fairtrade” label anymore. God be praised!

    If this goes on, we may finally arrive at “white label” products. Sorry, “BLACK label” products.

    Naomi Klein’s “No Logo” dreamworld realized … by anti-racist fervor. That book had a black cover already.

    Say, isn’t there a little N-Word buried in “Unilever”?

    And why is the BLACKED porn channel not called WHITED? Eh? Eh!? Answer that, anti-racist!

  24. El Dato says:
    @Achmed E. Newman

    But what about #C0FEFE (Eldritch White)?

  25. @Hernan Pizzaro del Blanco

    It’s almost as if people have been programmed to want something they don’t naturally possess.

    • Replies: @CCG
  26. @Jack D

    Your description of indigenous skin lightening and hair straightening products in sub-Saharan Africa and the Indian subcontinent omits the fact that these usually incorporated various forms of human or animal urine and dung.

  27. @Change that Matters

    Change, “All Shades of Black Matter” That works for me.

  28. Anonymous[151] • Disclaimer says:
    @Tanya Hyde

    It’s a class-status thing. In white countries rich people are brown and in brown countries rich people are white.

  29. @Tanya Hyde

    Tanya, a dilemma, whether to be black and rich, or to be white. Ah, the answer is obvious. Being white comes with “privileges” that are equal to the wealth of King Solomon’s Mines.

  30. Muggles says:

    Question: is there any culture/race/ethnicity of dark skinned people (i.e. “non White”) where a lighter skin tone isn’t seen as aesthetically desirable?

    Where the elites running the society don’t all appear to be lighter than the farmers in the fields or rural residents or average people?

    [I’d better post this question now before it is automatically removed from the Internet]

  31. indocon says:

    Lot of Hindu Gods and Goddesses are pretty white and blue in their depictions.

  32. @Achmed E. Newman

    Not to worry, unz.com lady readers, all 5 of you, as Target will still keep their generic Up&Up versions of these very same products.

    But remember: use only as directed. Excess use can have unintended side effects.

    • LOL: Achmed E. Newman
  33. AKAHorace says:

    Anyone think that there could be a market for skin darkening products in North America now ?

    Would be a boon for those of us who are 1/32 people of colour.

  34. @Jack D

    OTOH, if Unilever backs away from this market, this will just make room for modern local products – no going back to nightingale tongues. Apparently many of the Asian made products (and THEY are not going to back away from this market – they don’t give two damns about George Floyd and virtue signalling) contain toxic levels of mercury so George Floyd is going to get even more people killed. George Floyd – the gift that keeps on giving.

    If Unilever does back away from this market, it will do so by selling the unit that makes the product to some non-Western conglomerate. A bidding war might even emerge. It’s not as if Unilever itself built every single one of its brands from the ground up – many were acquired.

  35. Sunny is presumably a diminutive of the name Sunil, as in Sunil Gavaskar, a very famous cricketer.

    Forever Sunny:

  36. @Seminumerical

    Wow. I was balling my eyes out by the 2nd part 3 of the series… not so much due to the girl finally getting to be with her true love*, but just due to being pissed at myself for not having gone into the cosmetics industry. Just this one girl alone must have bought 7 or 8 jars of this shit that is probably nothing more than watered down white Elmers’s school glue. (That’s why the women buy it – peeling it off is always so much fun. I felt like a lizard doing that in 2nd grade.)

    Had a sister-in-law who was offered a post-doc position at the Bombay campus of the Pond’s Institute. Turns out that, due to affirmative action, the HR lady in charge of the bio-chem department had to hire a darker-skinned lady… I mean, she WAS a darker skinned lady at the beginning of the interview process.

    .

    * I didn’t get WTF was going on during those 2 or 3 text-messaging episodes, but I cried anyway.

  37. I have known East Indians (women, specifically) whose mouths are agape at the sight of healthy, white children. These women think that my children, for example, are like pure angels. They are drawn to the color of that skin. This affinity exists well outside of any American influence.

  38. Anonymous[278] • Disclaimer says:
    @Jack D

    Wow I’m surprised king of trivia jack d didn’t know jainism is an Indian religion and most jains use the surname Jain. Kinda like most sikhs use the surname Singh.

  39. CCG says:
    @The Wild Geese Howard

    Until the 20th century and Hollywood, European women also aimed for porcelain skin.

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