Dove soap is apologizing after they went viral for all the wrong reasons on Saturday following a racially insensitive advertisement that appeared to showcase a black woman turning white after using their soap.
A Dove Facebook advertising campaign popped up on a few people’s timelines and used a series of four images that showed a black woman taking off her T-shirt to reveal a white woman underneath her skin. The ad was made to symbolize that once you use Dove, you’re as clean as a white woman.
Following widespread backlash on social media Dove issued an apology for the series of offensive images and removed them from Facebook.
The brand took to Twitter to offer a public apology for the ad and admitted that they “missed the mark” when representing women of color.
Naythemua is the makeup artist who posted the racist advertisement and called the popular skincare brand out for being “tone deaf” with their advertising.
“What does America tell black people … that we are judged by the colour of our skin and that includes what is considered beautiful in this country,” she wrote.
“To know that colorism is a problem in the world, that includes bleaching the skin, and they would put this ad out without a thought … the tone deafness in these companies makes no sense.”
However, this, unfortunately, isn’t the first time Dove posted a racially insensitive advertisement promoting their skincare. In 2011, the company posted a before and after image that appeared to place three women from darkest to lightest, with the lightest woman suggested as the end result of cleanliness.
At the time the ad was published and received backlash, the brand said in a statement:
“All three women are intended to demonstrate the “after” product benefit. We do not condone any activity or imagery that intentionally insults any audience.”
However, it appears the damage has already been done. Take a look at some of the reactions from Dove’s latest racist advertisement.