Unilever to drop terms like ‘whitening’ from beauty products

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Unilever

FILE – In this Thursday, March 15, 2018 file photo, the logo for Unilever appears above a trading post on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange. Consumer products giant Unilever said Thursday, June 25, 2020, it is aiming for a “more inclusive vision of beauty” and will remove words such as “fair,” “whitening” and “lightening” from its products, a move that comes amid intense global debate about race sparked by the Black Lives Matter movement. (AP Photo/Richard Drew, file)

THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) — Consumer products giant Unilever said Thursday it is aiming for a “more inclusive vision of beauty” in its skin care products and will remove words such as “fair,” “whitening” and “lightening” from its products, a move that comes amid intense global debate about race sparked by the Black Lives Matter movement.

As part of the shift, Unilever will in coming months change the name of its “Fair & Lovely” product that is used for skin-lightening and sold in Asia, the company said.

“We are fully committed to having a global portfolio of skin care brands that is inclusive and cares for all skin tones, celebrating greater diversity of beauty,” Sunny Jain, the head of Unilever’s Beauty & Personal Care. “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.”

A statement from Hindustan Unilever Limited said the change would involve dropping the word “Fair.” It said a new name was awaiting regulatory approval.

Unilever said that its Fair & Lovely range “has never been, and is not, a skin bleaching product.” The global consumer company said its advertising for Fair & Lovely products has been changing since 2014.

“In 2019, we reflected this evolution on the Fair & Lovely pack in India, removing before-and-after impressions and shade guides that could indicate a transformation; and we have progressed all communication of product benefits towards glow, even tone, skin clarity and radiance,” the company said.

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